Prince William Celebrates its LGBTQ+ Community During 1st Annual Pride Event

Prince William Celebrates its LGBTQ+ Community During 1st Annual Pride Event

Attendees dancing at Prince William County Pride event

Thank you to everybody who joined us for the Prince William County Office of Executive Management, Equity, and Inclusion’s first Pride Community Celebration on June 7, in coordination with the Board proclaiming June as Pride month. Scores of people gathered in the plaza at McCoart Building to enjoy camaraderie, music, and food, while also connecting with government resources and local LGBTQIA+ organizations.

“Gatherings like this are so important because they help show that every person is worthy of being embraced and included,” said Occoquan District Kenny Boddye during his remarks. “When we welcome everybody in Prince William County, and make sure that everyone feels that they’re a part of our family and our community, we thrive.”

“This celebration of pride and the history of the LGBTQIA+ community is a way to revel in their existence and their visibility,” said Board of County Supervisors Chair Ann Wheeler.

Supervisor Boddye also noted that these welcoming and celebratory messages can literally save lives, particularly among our LGBTQ+ youth, who studies show are more than four times as likely to attempt suicide than their peers. They are not “inherently prone to suicide risk because of their sexual orientation or gender identity but rather placed at higher risk because of how they are mistreated and stigmatized in society,” explains The Trevor Project in a factsheet.

Factors that increase the risk of depression and attempted suicide include experiencing discrimination, bullying, and rejection from parents or other loved ones. The fact sheet also notes that “having at least one accepting adult can reduce the risk of a suicide attempt among LGBTQ young people by 40 percent,” and lists the following protective factors:

  • Social Support and Acceptance from Adults and Peers
  • Affirming Spaces and Activities, Especially at School
  • Policies and Practices that Support Transgender and Nonbinary Youth

If you want to”Educate, Advocate and Celebrate” all year long, consider visiting these sites for ideas and resources: