Exploring our identity with allies and acronyms

Members of the community wear the Oban Pride wrist band to show their support whatever their gender identity.

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In the third of our LGBT History Month series Oban Pride chairman Phill Dexter takes us through the formation of the local branch.

Oban Pride became a constituted organisation in April 2019 and in November 2019
we became a registered charity.

The first planning session for Oban Pride was held in October 2018 when work started on not only becoming a constituted organisation but also to run our inaugural Pride in 2019.

When we were writing our constitution one of the first things we wrote was our mission statement, part of which is: ‘The purpose of Oban Pride is to promote Equality and Diversity throughout Oban and the surrounding areas, through providing safe spaces for the LGBTQ+ community and its allies to come together to celebrate and promote equal rights throughout Scotland and across the world, while reflecting on our history.’

Throughout February we are reflecting on LGBTQ+ History. The full acronym is
LGBTQQIAAP but we shorten this to LGBTQ+. LGBTQQIAAPP represents
everybody within the community – it doesn’t matter what your gender identity or sexual
orientation is. LGBTQ+ stands for L- Lesbian, G – Gay, B – Bisexual, T – Trans
(Transgender), Q – Queer (once a derogatory term now used by the community as
an umbrella term), Q – Questioning, I – Intersex, A – Ally (anyone who stands up for
equality and equal rights), A -Asexual, P -Pansexual.

It doesn’t really matter who you are if you stand up for equality and think that everyone should be treated the same regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity then you are part of the LGBTQ+ community because you are an ally. We work with some amazing allies of the LGBTQ+ community and could not run Pride events without them.

Talking about why she got involved, committee member and ally of Oban Pride, Shona said: ‘I first became aware of Oban Pride when I attended the 2019 Oban Pride with a group of pupils from Oban High School.

‘I was staggered by the support from the Oban community and loved the atmosphere and positivity of Pride so much that I joined the committee and it has been nothing but the same since then.’