An update from The Board on the 2024 Parade

The Board of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, the Police Minister the Hon. Yasmin Catley MP and Police Commissioner Karen Webb came together in a constructive discussion regarding the Board’s concerns about Police participation at this year’s Parade, as well as a range of broader issues currently impacting LGBTQIA+ communities.

As a result of the discussions, and police commitment to actions, an agreement was reached that LGBTIQ+ Liaison Officers (GLLO), LGBTQIA+ officers, and their allies and supporters will participate in this year’s parade in a reduced capacity to the originally-planned NSW Police float. To address concerns from the community the GLLO participants will march in the 2024 Parade out of uniform.

This weekend’s Parade is a beacon of hope, pride, celebration and inclusivity – this outcome allows for GLLO’s who volunteer their time and service to the community to participate in the event in a considered and respectful way as we navigate this tragedy together.

The discussion also explored the Police commitment to and implementation of an external strategic LGBTQIA+ advisory panel working with the NSW Police following the recommendations of the Inquiry into LGBTQ Hate Crimes. Ensuring the advancement of representation and that the Commissioner is adequately informed on issues impacting the community, including LGBTQIA+ domestic violence. 

It was also recognised in the discussion that greater communication and understanding is needed between Police, NSW Government, Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and the broader LGBTQIA+ community. Police and LGBTQIA+ communities have shared a difficult history, which must inform the continued development of communication and collaboration.