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Parade director: NPIP message “should be heard”

Tue 23 Feb 2016 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback

The Auckland Pride Festival Parade Director believes the message NPIP sought to deliver to the public during the Pride Parade “is a perfectly valid message and one that should be heard.” Photo thanks to Andrea Nick Davion says he understands No Pride in Prisons aim to “give a voice to a very small minority, who would likely otherwise fall between the cracks” however, he says he is not sure the protest helped their cause. “We prepare for many scenarios and work closely with the city, the Police and our stewards on measures to keep people safe and allow everyone to enjoy the event,” says Davion. “A group chose disruption rather than co-operation as their means of communication, I’m not sure it helps their cause. “It would be a shame if their actions ran contrary to their aims by alienating people they hope to win over.” Davion says Pride “would prefer to see the whole community use Pride and the parade, as many do, to get their messages across”. Saying “over 1800 people took part on more than 60 floats from across the country and community, with more than half of the parade made up of smaller community groups and organisations who use it to get their messages across to the tens of thousands lining the route,” Davion believes the parade was “a huge success”. “Our lead float this year was inspired by the marches and protests that led to Homosexual Law Reform in 1986. So protest in this community is nothing new,” he says. “In the end it [the parade] passed off very smoothly. Our main concern was for the safety of the participants and spectators, and the parade was delayed for a while for that reason, but was soon moving again. “I can only apologise to the floats that got held up, but I understand there was lots of interaction with the crowd, it must have been a great atmosphere and it was great to see everyone at Western Park after the event relaxing and enjoying the post parade Happy Ending vibe.”    

Credit: Daily News staff

First published: Tuesday, 23rd February 2016 - 7:04am

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