In 1996, Melbourne’s LGBTIQA+ community took to the streets to show solidarity for the first ever Pride March. The 1996 March took almost the same route along St Kilda’s Fitzroy St, transforming the strip into a show of community pride. The March has since taken place each year, as an opportunity for members of the LGBTIQA+ community and allies to take part in a fun, colourful and joyful day of celebration.
This year, the Midsumma Pride March was held on Sunday, 4 February. 10,000 people took to the sweltering streets of Melbourne for the annual March, with thousands more lining the streets to watch the iconic parade.
Northern Health staff were among the many who braved the 38 degree weather to march along Fitzroy Street, together with other healthcare services and organisations. The presence of Northern Health at the Midsumma Festival Pride March shows our LGBTIQA+ staff, family and patients that we are a health care service that prioritises the wellbeing of our diverse community. This is Northern Health’s fourth time marching in the event.
Event Organiser and co-chair of the rainbow Committee, Electra Ulrich, was proud of the turnout.
“What another amazing Pride March with Northern Health! It was great to see some familiar and some new faces marching with us. I felt proud to be representing Northern Health,” she said.
Maria Soo, Director of Workforce Planning and Projects said, “It was incredible being part of the Northern Health contingent with representatives from across various campuses and directorates getting together to celebrate our uniqueness. There was so much excitement and buzz throughout the day, with people (and lots of canines) marching for the right to a discrimination-free existence. As a member of the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Steering Committee, I look forward to working with our workforce in 2024 to promote and celebrate diversity.”
First time marcher at Northern Health, Melanie Cricco said, “For me, joining in the Pride March under the Northern Health banner was a vibrant and colourful celebration, conveying that Northern Health is a safe and inclusive place for everyone to access its healthcare services.”
Andrew Grey, Rainbow Health Working Group Member, also echoed this sentiment.
“Pride March is an important day to celebrate those who are a part of the LBGTIQA+ community and to show our solidarity. It is important for our patients and their families to see that we are a supportive organisation and a LBGTIQA+ safe place to receive healthcare.”
The Northern Health Foundation was very happy to support Pride March by purchasing the flags. This was part of the funds donated by staff through the Northern Health Workplace Giving Program. The Foundation is passionate about supporting causes that promote equality and inclusiveness and this is a fantastic opportunity to further our commitment to the LGBTQA+ community.
The Workplace Giving Program is agreat way to contribute and support these ongoing initiatives that are making a difference. The form is available on PROMPT or you join by getting in touch with the Foundation team via email email@example.com.
If you would like to get involved with the Northern Health Rainbow Working group, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Featured image: Northern Health staff at Midsumma Pride March 202