Pride Week 2018 will take place from Monday the 27th of August through to Friday the 31st of August. In this article, NUPSA LGBTI Representative Barrie Shannon discusses the importance of Pride Week and previews some of NUPSA’s pride-themed events.
It’s that time of year – UON Pride Week is almost upon us again. Every year, the NUSA Queer Collective collaborates with NUPSA and the University of Newcastle to host Pride Week, a week of events that seek to highlight the contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ+) students and staff. As the NUPSA LGBTI Representative, I’m proud to once again be involved in organising this important annual event. Pride Week 2018 will take place from Monday the 27th of August through to Friday the 31st of August.
Homophobia, transphobia and other forms of sexuality and gender-based discrimination still exist in our communities and can have a significant negative impact on our study and work lives. This is why events such as Pride Week are so important – it provides us with an opportunity not only to reaffirm our view that this kind of discrimination is wrong, but to celebrate the happy and positive aspects of our colourful and dynamic culture. This year, NUPSA’s contribution to Pride Week is arguably larger than ever, and we have taken the lead in organising a number of exciting and important events.
Flag Raising Ceremony – Monday 27th of August, 12:00PM at the Great Hall
In 2017, NUPSA and the Equity and Diversity Co-Ordinator pushed to have the rainbow flag flown at the University of Newcastle for the very first time. This year, the rainbow flag will once again fly above the Great Hall for the duration of Pride Week. The ceremony will consist of an Acknowledgment of Country and some brief words from the NUSA Queer Convener and the NUPSA LGBTI Representative, before the Philadelphia Pride Flag is raised.
Pride History Talk – Monday 27th of August, 5:00PM at the Godfrey Tanner Bar
Following a successful Pride History event earlier in semester one, NUSA and NUPSA have collaborated to make history, resilience and resistance a key feature of Pride Week 2018. The Pride History Talk will feature presentations from: Associate Professor Erica Southgate from the UON School of Education, and editor of Out in the Valley: Hunter Gay and Lesbian Histories; John Witte, a Newcastle-based historian with a vast collection of gay and lesbian photos, publications and oral histories; and Sandi Banks, a lifelong lesbian activist, and one of the ‘78ers’ imprisoned after the very first Mardi Gras. Light refreshments generously provided by the NUSA Queer Collective.
Pride Trivia – Tuesday 28th of August, 7:00PM at the Clarendon Hotel, Hunter Street
August will see NUPSA’s usual trivia night take on a pride theme – incorporating questions about LGBTIQ people, history, culture, media and more. A shift from the usual venue in NewSpace will see teams able to purchase meals and drinks at the Clarendon Hotel, a frequent host of NUPSA events.
Students looking to test their knowledge can register their team here.
Postgraduate Queer Showcase Evening – Thursday 30th of August, 6:00PM at The Hop Factory, Darby Street
Known previously as the ‘Postgraduate Queer Research Evening’, this event not only seeks to shine a spotlight on the research efforts of postgraduate students who are members of the LGBTIQ community, but to celebrate their other skills and talents too. In 2017, this event won the Council of Postgraduate Associations (CAPA) award for Welfare Initiative of the Year. Postgraduate and honours students are encouraged to present their research, read poetry or a short story, perform music, comedy or more. Canapes are provided and drinks are available for purchase at the bar.
Registration for this event is essential and can be made here.
Wear It Purple Day Morning Tea – Friday, 31st of August, 10:00AM at Park on the Hill
NUPSA and the Ally Network are once again collaborating to celebrate Wear It Purple Day with a morning tea. Wear It Purple Day is observed on the last Friday of August each year to show support for young LGBTIQ people, who often experience mental illness as a result of homophobia, transphobia and discrimination. The Wear it Purple Day Morning Tea will be provided by NUPSA, and will feature guests including ACON, NUSA, UON, the local NSW Police Gay and Lesbian Liaison Officers (GLLOs) and more, in a show of support and solidarity with LGBTIQ staff and students at UON.
A full program of events for Pride Week 2018 can be found here.