The City of Philadelphia will next week raise the transgender Pride flag at City Hall.
The first-ever ceremony will take place at noon June 4, and the flag will remain raised until June 6, the duration of the Philadelphia Trans-Health Conference.
“Far too often the ‘T’ is left behind or out of sight when we talk about LGBT issues, and it’s important to visibly make a commitment to the work that we know needs to be done,” said Nellie Fitzpatrick, the city’s director of LGBT affairs. “I can’t think of anything more visible than putting the trans flag right next to the American flag at City Hall.”
Fitzpatrick worked with the organizers of PTHC to organize the initiative. PTHC attendees will process to the ceremony together and assemble in a designated area.
There will be a city representative speaking at the ceremony — either Mayor Nutter, Fitzpatrick or another official — and it will be a short ceremony so that PTHC participants can return to the conference’s afternoon activities.
Fitzpatrick said she envisions the flag-raising ceremony becoming an annual effort, along the lines of the rainbow-flag raising initiative that has happened each October since 2010.
She noted that this occasion is meant to be celebratory in nature.
“We have far too many times where the trans community is mourning, from Trans Day of Remembrance to every time we lose somebody,” Fitzpatrick said. “But instead we should take a moment and revel in the empowerment of where the community is going because that’s incredibly important to celebrate.”