After anti-LGBT vandalism at Ladner United Church, Delta city hall flies Pride flag for first time

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      Symbols of the LGBT community may have often been targets of vandalism but the City of Delta has taken a stand against such prejudice with a message of inclusion.

      The Pride flag was raised for the first time at Delta City Hall today (June 5) after a rainbow flag was found marred by black spray paint at Ladner United Church on June 3. The flag had been raised at the church for the United Church’s inaugural Pride Sunday on June 2.

      On June 4, Mayor Harvie expressed his concerns about the anti-LGBT vandalism.

      Delta Mayor George V. Harvie then went on to direct staff to raise the rainbow flag.

      A City of Delta news release stated the flag-raising was in support of LGBT people, the Ladner United Church, and “all Delta citizens who stand for inclusion and acceptance and against intolerance and discrimination”.

      The City of Delta informed the Georgia Straight that the flag will be flown for the duration of June to recognize Pride Month. 

      “Delta is a community of inclusion and acceptance and I felt strongly that we should do something tangible to support the LGBTQ+ community following the despicable defacing of the Pride flag at Ladner United Church earlier this week,” Mayor Harvie stated. “On behalf of Council, I am proud to promote inclusiveness in our community and stand against intolerance wherever we find it."

      Rainbow crosswalks in the Lower Mainland have often been the target of vandalism.

      After rainbow crosswalks were installed in Surrey, Burnaby, and White Rock in 2018, all were defaced with graffiti or white paint. However, all graffiti was successfully removed before Pride celebrations in each municipality.

      Last year, Delta held its first Pride event with a Delta Pride Picnic at Memorial Park in August. 

      Meanwhile, Ladner United Church, which has ordered a new Pride flag, will counter the act of discrimination by having the defaced flag available at a service on Sunday (June 9) for LGBT–supportive messages to be added to it.