News (USA)

West Hollywood replaces crosswalk’s rainbow flag design with Progress Pride flag

Progress pride flag (new design of rainbow flag) waving in the air with blue sky, LGBTQ community in Netherlands
A progress Pride flagPhoto: Shutterstock

The city of West Hollywood, California is going to change their six-striped Pride flag crosswalk and replace it with a Progress Pride flag crosswalk, complete with trans flag colors and black and brown stripes arranged in an arrow.

The Transgender Advisory Board approved the city’s plans to change the crosswalks at Santa Monica and San Vicente Boulevards to include the additional colors.

Related: How many versions of the Pride flag are there now? You might be surprised.

The project will cost $85,000, according to WEHOville.

West Hollywood became the first city to have rainbow crosswalks permanently installed, instead of just during Pride festivities, in 2012. Now the crosswalk will look more like Daniel Quasar’s Progress Pride flag design that emphasizes that transgender people and queer people of color are included in the community.

The project has been in the works for some time. Last year, the plan was to add black and brown stripes to existing rainbow crosswalks and turn one of them into the transgender flag.

A letter from former Executive Director of the City of Philadelphia’s Office of LGBT Affairs Amber Hikes, who is credited with adding the black and brown stripes to the flag for Pride Month in 2017, suggested it as a response to several instances of discrimination in the city’s Gayborhood.

“Your city and your leaders have for decades been role modeling that it’s possible that we embrace equity, demand justice and celebrate all of us,” read their letter.

“Updating your flag proclaims with everything that Black lives more than matter. You’re saying that queer Black and Brown representation is who we are, that Black and Brown trans lives are precious and ought to be celebrated, that centering the leadership and voices of those who are impacted is the only way we will arrive at collective liberation.”

In 2018, Oregon activist Daniel Quasar came up with the Progress Pride flag. It was designed as a way to include both the additional stripes and the transgender pride flag, as well as keep the six-striped rainbow flag in its previous form, for design reasons.

“I felt there needed to be more thought put into the design and emphasis of the flag to give it more meaning,” xe explained at the time.

“As a gay white male of a certain age in this city, I do strongly support this effort to bring new life and new awareness to all the kinds of ways in which we want to make sure people are represented and have a place in our community whether its spoken or painted or written,” said West Hollywood City Councilmember John D’Amico at a meeting about the crosswalks.

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