2019 Pride Parade Grand Marshals
May 26, 2020
Earlier this year, we announced the theme for Vancouver Pride 2019: 50 Years & Still Fighting.
On May 14, 1969, Bill C-150 partially decriminalized some same-sex practices. As the powers that be celebrate 50 years of “progress” since the partial decriminalization of “gross indecency and buggery” (read: oral and anal sex) for two men over the age of 21 in private spaces, we recognize that the fight for liberation continues to this day. The addition of sexual orientation (1996) and gender identity (2017) to the human rights code, the right for same-sex couples to adopt (1995), common-law benefits (1999-2000), same-sex marriage (2005) and other legal wins were battles hard won by our communities, not rights bestowed on us by a benevolent government.
These wins have been social as well as legal; LGBTQAI2S+ communities have engaged in tireless work to imagine a liberated future for all of us while labouring to make it happen. Our Grand Marshals exemplify those who have picked up the fight and continue to carve out space for our communities. It is our pleasure to announce our 2019 Pride Parade Grand Marhsals: Orene Askew, Idris Hudson, and Queer ASL. These groups and individuals have dedicated their time and energy to creating a world that is more equitable and inviting. As we celebrate Vancouver Pride 2019, we recognize those whose activism contributes to the betterment of our communities while inspiring others to join. It has been 50 years since partial “decrim” and we are still here. Fighting.
Orene Askew aka DJ O Show
Orene Askew aka DJ O Show has brought a high level of energy and expertise to each event she has hosted and DJ’d for over a decade! From Vancouver to Toronto, Las Vegas and Texas, O Show has traveled near and far for weddings, birthdays, holiday parties, corporate events, restaurant and club openings, charity fundraisers, youth conferences and regular pride events throughout her home city of Vancouver, BC.
O Show brings professionalism and passion; she has explored many genres of music but remains true to her love for hip hop and R&B, incorporating beats to ensure you never want to leave the dance floor.
DJ O Show has experience teaching students with an inspired approach . She is an inspirational speaker, traveling across the country to bring ambition and drive to all generations, and is one of the youngest elected members and Spokespersons for Squamish Nation Council. Orene is a two-spirited activist proving time and time again that “Diversity Makes Beautiful Music.”
Canadian Indigenous Artist Idris Hudson exercises his craft across the Lower Mainland and the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. His passionate work across three decades has touched the hearts of his peers in community empowerment, harm reduction, and luxury hospitality.
Idris Hudson brought his voice to the TEDx stage with his heartwarming and personal talk, “Consciousness is Irreversible.” His talk encouraged participants to build a dialogue with homeless citizens to understand how to be helpful.
A unique and effective knowledge translator, Idris was awarded the StandOUT Educator Award by Vancouver Pride in 2017, following a decade of dedicated work in harm reduction in LGBTQAI2S+ communities.
As a proponent of inclusive community engagement, he is proud to be a founding supporter of the wildly popular Untoxicated festival which is held annually during Vancouver Pride. Since the festival’s inception, Untoxicated has hosted entertainment power players and community advocates to further the message that addiction recovery is LIVING!
As a Deaf queer person, Queer ASL founder Zoeé Montpetit has witnessed regular inaccessibility in queer spaces and a lack of queer and tans inclusivity in cishet spaces. Most American Sign Language (ASL) clases focus primarily on hetero- and cis- normative language and concepts while frequently posing affordability and accessibility barriers.
Queer ASL offers a more accessible, affordable, and safer space for folks to learn ASL by breaking down barriers that have traditionally hindered queer and trans students and teachers. Queer ASL has worked diligently to carve out a space for marginalized folks to learn about ASL and Deaf culture in a welcoming and inclusive environment.
Queer ASL continues to form bridges by increasing communication access for Deaf and hard of hearing folks in Vancouver’s queer communities. An enduring sense of kinship among students and teachers has been cultivated through mutual respect and acceptance. Because the program encourages the enrollment of marginalized folks, students are able to recognize and relate to these shared aspects in Deaf culture and ASL, and in turn, relate to and feel motivated by a sense of solidarity with Deaf communities.
Our Grand Marshals will ride in style during the 2019 Pride Parade courtesy of Dilawri Auto Group. Thank-you Dilawri for providing our Grand Marshals with vehicles!
The Vancouver Pride Society would like to offer our congratulations to our 2019 Pride Parade Grand Marshals. Thank-you for the work you continue to do to uplift all of us.