Councillor proposes painted crosswalk for Pride

Image of Nick Seebruch
By Nick Seebruch
Councillor proposes painted crosswalk for Pride
Photo from Pixabay.

CORNWALL, Ontario – Cornwall City Councillor Carilyne Hébert put forward a motion at the May 10 Council meeting asking administration to consider allowing a crosswalk in the city to be painted in honour of Pride Week.

In her motion, Hébert argues that Pride Week is an important time for Cornwall’s local 2SLGBTQ+ advocacy group Diversity Cornwall, as it highlights and celebrates their efforts to support and advocate for the 2SLGBTQ+ community in Cornwall. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Diversity Cornwall will not be able to hold their traditional Pride Week celebrations, including the Pride March. Hébert offers that painting a crosswalk in honour of Pride Week is another way that it can be celebrated in these current COVID times.

“I wanted to stress the importance that celebrating Pride has to our community, not just once a year, but every day to show our residents that we are an inclusive community and that not only that we have diversity, but that we embrace diversity,” Hébert said.

Pride Week runs from July 10 to 17 this year, and Hébert asked that administration return in four weeks with a report on the feasibility, cost, as well as potential crosswalks that could be painted in honour of Pride Week.

The motion was seconded by Councillor Todd Bennett who said that the idea was about supporting members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community in Cornwall.

“I drive a motorcycle and I drive through a lot of different communities, and whether if you drive through Ottawa, or believe it or not, Prescott, you can find a rainbow crosswalk,” he said. “This isn’t something that is unheard of and every time I drive by one the thing that goes through my mind is what a nice show of support for the community.”

Bennett also preemptively responded to those who might ask why there are not painted crosswalks specifically for straight people.

“I say to you, I can walk across a crosswalk, or I can go to a parade, or I can go to a park and hold my wife’s hand and not worry about being harassed either verbally or physically,” said Bennett. “I think by doing something like this we are saying to all of our communities that we are accepting of you.”

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