Across London, rainbow flags are fluttering, from the Shell building on South Bank to the University of London library and the Cabinet Office (although not the Foreign Office), as the city gears up for Pride tomorrow. Even the London Eye will be lit up in rainbow colours.
This year, 48 companies, from huge multinationals to small bars, have floats at the Pride parade, up from 42 last year. That doesn’t count all employers – charities, government departments, the army and more are marching too. Other businesses are sponsoring Pride, but not taking part in the parade.
With the US Supreme Court legalising gay marriage across the whole country today and Caitlyn Jenner’s transition receiving a public outpouring of support and admiration, LGBTQ rights are advancing across much of the world. So it makes good business sense, as well as being the right thing to do, to support Pride, as well as queer causes in general.
Big international companies could make an even bigger difference, though, if they made their support for Pride loud and clear in countries where life is still difficult and dangerous for LGBTQ people. Nonetheless, kudos to all those marching tomorrow. Here they are, in order of appearance in the parade.
The Shadow Lounge / Village / Bar Soho
Prudential / M&G
Transport for London
John Lewis Partnership
Royal Bank of Canada
Lloyds Banking Group
Nationwide Building Society
Whole Foods Market