FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 5/26/22
Name: Eli, Communications & Digital Director
Affiliation: TGI Justice Project (TGIJP)
Statement on Mayor Breed’s Decision to Boycott Pride
In 2016, Ms. Janetta Johnson, CEO of TGIJP, was invited to join the San Francisco Pride Parade as a Grand Marshal. Ms. Janetta and TGIJP refused to participate, knowing the heavy police presence would only bring terror and fear. In 2019, Lavender Phoenix (then known as APIENC) was chosen as a Community Grand Marshal. Lavender Phoenix chose to attend in protest of the police. While many onlookers cheered, others threw rocks as LavNix marched
ID: TGIJP’s CEO Janetta Johnson wearing a flower crown with blue background and text reading “POLICE OUT OF PRIDE” on the top. Text reading “THANK YOU MS. JANETTA ~ WE CHOSE YOU BECAUSE WE TRUST YOU. WE DO NOT CHOOSE OR TRUST THE POLICE” on the bottom.image by Micah Bazant
This week, Mayor Breed announced she will boycott the Pride Parade in support of the SFPD, whose officers are not allowed to march in uniform for the first time. Her decision is unsurprising. It is another step in a long effort by the Mayor to empower and protect the SFPD, despite its history of systemic violence and rampant abuse.
The SFPD continues to harass poor, trans, queer, disabled Black and brown people, while making no impact on the actual needs of San Franciscans. Every cent spent on the growing police budget drains funds that could be spent on local businesses, schools, equitable housing, healthcare, and community centers — real solutions to violence, harm, and isolation.
Lavender Phoenix and TGIJP’s communities are among the many exploited at the hands of the SFPD. It should not surprise the Mayor that the presence of the police at Pride inspires fear. Per TGIJP’s Communications Director eli berry: “Pride was birthed out of rebellion — a fight led by Black and brown transgender people against human rights abuses and inequities, imprisonment, police violence, racism, poverty, and societal pressures.”
TGIJP, Lavender Phoenix, and our allies will continue to invest in community-based solutions to harm. We will lead peer counseling programs to meet each others’ mental health needs; we will fight for housing for TGI people; we will train our community in transformative and restorative justice skills; we will develop resources to address the historical impact of foster care and inter-generational family trauma, and so much more. We need all of our trans, queer, and allied communities in San Francisco to join us.
The Mayor will use Pride to win police power, but we know it’s up to us to keep each other safe.
Statement jointly written by TGIJP and Lavender Phoenix.