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Second party to promote equal rights for gays

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 6: A second event to promote equal rights for gay people is to be held in a city nightspot tomorrow (Thursday).

The Big Gay Thursday event — with a dress code of business attire — is aimed at fostering links between Bermuda businesses and the gay community.

But organiser Valentino Tear, a Bermudian based in England, where he is a successful DJ, said: “I want to encourage everyone to come to these parties.

“They are not exclusively gay — but they are gay-friendly. A lot of people say they don’t want to go because people will think they’re gay. But this is not a gay or a straight thing — it’s a Bermuda thing.

“It’s an opportunity to show we can all party together as one, supporting and respecting each other as Bermuda residents and human beings. It’s an open event and everyone is welcome.”

The event will be held at Taste One Four One in the new Sir John W Swan Building on Front Street.

Mr Tear said office wear had been chosen as the dress code to underline the need for gay people to make their voices heard in the workplace.

He added: “If Bermuda is going to move forward with Government legislation, then business and corporations have to show support for gay people. They can’t help us if they can’t see us.

“I want people to start thinking about what business in Bermuda can do working with the gay community and how we can benefit from each other.”

Mr Tear added that a minutes’ silence would also be held at the event to mark deceased pioneers for gay rights on the island.

He said: “If it wasn’t for the roads that these people paved for us, we wouldn’t be at the point we are today.”

The event kicks off at 7:30pm and runs until 1am. Entry is $20, which includes a free drink and competition prizes were donated by Hamilton’s 27th Century Boutique.

The event follows a Pink Monday party, also organised by Mr Tear and held at the new Red Steakhouse on Front Street at the end of last month.

Around 100 people attended the event, which was for a change in the law to extend basic human rights to gay people.

Red co-owner and hospitality veteran Rick Olson said that Bermuda business and tourism operators should “welcome gay people with open arms.”

By Raymond Hainey

Senior Reporter

Source: Bermuda Sun

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