L.A. Pride's Black solidarity march will go on — but without L.A. Pride.
The organizer, Christopher Street West, announced Monday that it would no longer helm the demonstration, which came under fire after a permit application to the Los Angeles Police Department was posted to social media.
Jeff Consoletti, the event producer who penned the permit letter, withdrew his involvement from the march Friday after many balked at his stressing of the "strong and unified partnership with law enforcement." In a statement, Consoletti said CSW "assured me they had the support of the Black queer community for their event, but it has become clear that is not entirely the case."
In its own departure statement, CSW said it would "no longer be involved with organizing" the protest, which is now in the hands of an advisory board of Black LGBTQ+ leaders. Although it is no longer an organizer, CSW said it is "in full support" of the new protest, which is now named the All Black Lives Matter March.
The march will still take place June 14 and will proceed from Hollywood to the West Hollywood gayborhood. CSW assured its followers that there would be no police presence or corporate sponsors — "This is not a Pride Parade or celebration event. This is a solidarity protest march" — and asked participants to wear masks to help prevent COVID-19 spread.
The statement included an apology to Black Lives Matters organizers. While CSW had opened talks with Black LGBTQ+ leaders about the march prior to its announcement, it "had not been able to align directly with them" beforehand, the statement said. Leaders from Black Lives Matter LA are now involved in the conversation.
CSW also acknowledged that "systemic racism, implicit bias and privilege" exists in its own organization as well as the United States. Thus, it committed "to examine internal policy and further diversify its Board to include more voices and perspectives from the Black LGBTQ+ community."
The Black advisory board is comprised of Gerald Garth (Garth Management Group), LLC Brandon Anthony (B.A.S.H LA), Pastor Sammie Haynes (Vision Church Los Angeles), Paul Scott (LA Black LGBTQ Movement), Princess Murray (Compton Pride), Dr. Christopher Jackon (Black Lives Matter Los Angeles), Stacy Alford (MPH), Yuriel “Miss. Shalae” Young (The Glasswing Group), and Blossom Brown.
Learn more about the All Black Lives Matter solidarity march can be found on ablm.la.