LIVINGSTON, NJ — At the request of the Livingston Committee for Diversity and Inclusion (LCDI), the township will once again raise the LGBTQ+ Pride Flag for the month of June, with a flag-raising ceremony to be held on Wednesday from 6:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. at the Livingston Public Library and Livingston Town Hall.
The flag will fly over Livingston for the fourth consecutive year in commemoration of Pride Month, held nationally in remembrance of the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan—a tipping point for the gay rights movement, according to the LCDI.
A “Rainbow Storytime” will be held at the library from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. to discuss stories on gender with with kids in grades K-5. Those in attendance will then march across the street to town hall for the flag raising and accompanying reception beginning at approximately 7:05 p.m.
In addition to reflecting on the anniversary of Stonewall Jackson, some new and some classic speakers will also contribute to the ceremony, which is co-sponsored this year by the Livingston Public Library. Speakers include Garden State Equality Director of Communications and Membership Jon Oliveira; Livingston Community Policing Officer Kevin Mullaney; Pastor Dan Martian from the Livingston Presbyterian Church; and more.
The members of LCDI, whose mission is to “celebrate the cultural heritages and backgrounds of [Livingston] residents,” attended a Livingston Township Council meeting in August of 2015 to address all of the reasons why it is important to acknowledge some of the struggles of the LGBTQ+ community and to show that Livingston supports that community. By acting on residents’ request to take action, the committee was able to get an ordinance adopted stating that the Township of Livingston would fly the Pride Flag at the Livingston Oval during Pride Month in June.
The township council has said that this event represents not only the committee’s commitment to celebrating diversity and inclusion, but the township’s as well.
According to the LCDI’s mission, its members seek to “raise awareness, foster respect, learn from each other, be inclusive and together create a warm, welcoming hometown experience for all [Livingston] community members,” and this event seeks to achieve that.