First Nations people will lead the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras parade on Saturday 3 March to highlight our proud history and our present fight for equality.
Since Mardi Gras’ first year in 1978, members of our community have been involved and represented in Australia’s biggest LGBTI event. While 2018 marks the 40th anniversary of the parade, this year also marks the 30th anniversary of our first official float, which served as a political statement about the nation’s 1988’s bicentennial celebrations, given it did not acknowledge over 40 thousand years of our history.
Our float this year is called Revolution, and is created and led by First Nations people of diverse gender and sexuality, together with family, friends and supporters. The theme highlights that we can be successful in achieving equality in all LGBTQI communities around Australia, including Indigenous peoples.
Our key messages are:
• We are working towards equality, acknowledging our past achievements through history and our continuing work today.
• Equality is needed regardless of race, culture, gender, sexuality, religion or marital status, in all areas of human rights and social justice.
• We need others to join with us and work together to achieve a Treaty, and equality around education health, and other opportunities.
Our fabulous float features:
• Revolution – the theme of one of our first floats.
• Our bus carrying honoured guests including Elders who, as role models and supporters of the LGTBQI community and families.
• Special guests whose profile gives visibility to our human rights, including Chair of the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples, Jackie Huggins.
• Diverse community members who’ve travelled from across the country to celebrate Mardi Gras’ 40th Anniversary, and to take part in joining together on the first Nations float.
• This year will take us back to where it all began for the First Nations peoples LGTBQI community in the parade. The float will be led by an historical Aboriginal flag that was created by a group of our LGTBQI in the community as well as the Captain Cook costume that was worn by the late Malcolm Cole in the original 1988 float 30 years ago.
• Music by leading music duo Electric Fields.
The entry is proudly supported by the Aboriginal Project at ACON, NSW’s leading HIV prevention, HIV support and LGBTI health organisation, to facilitate First Nations people’s awareness of and access to ACON’s LGBTI health promotion work and HIV services.
Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people interested to join our float should go to www.facebook.com/AboriginalProjectACON for details on when and how to register. Places are limited and always fill up fast.
For information on past parade entries visit the Interactive history of First Peoples entries in the Sydney Mardi Gras Parade www.blackmardigras.net