Adams decries exclusion of NYPD from Pride Parade: ‘Contradicts our freedom of expression’

New York City Mayor Eric Adams did a political two-step slamming the organizers of the city’s annual Gay Pride Parade for excluding NYPD officers but stopped short of saying he would not attend.

The parade is set to take place in June. In 2021, organizers announced that New York City police officers would not be allowed to attend until at least 2025 due to alleged violence against black individuals and at gay events.

“Mayor Adams support inclusivity and allowing all New Yorkers to be true to who they are. Banning officers from wearing their uniforms at Pride is disappointing and contradicts our freedom of expression. That’s one of the many reasons why he has long supported and fought for LGBTQ+ officers to be able to wear their uniforms at the Pride parade. He will continue to do the same before next month’s parade,” spokesman Fabien Levy told the New York Post in an interview.

Levy reportedly refused to comment several times when asked if Adams, a former NYPD officer, would boycott the June 26 parade if gay cops are not allowed to take part in the celebration.

(Video Credit: Fox News)

This will be the second year in a row that local law enforcement officers will be banned from the parade, according to a statement by Heritage of Pride, which is organizing the event.

“Beginning in 2021, NYC Pride publicly banned corrections and law enforcement exhibitors from marching in their uniforms and participating in recruitment activities at NYC Pride events until at least 2025. This action was a step in the path of transformative justice affirming our commitment to eliminating violence, harm, and abuse at NYC Pride events,” the group said, reiterating its exclusionary policy.

Prior to 2021, gay officers were welcome at the parade. Gay Officers Action League (GOAL) members have typically marched in uniform with other attendees since the organization was founded in 1982. With the death of George Floyd in 2020, that all changed as anti-police sentiment set in across the nation.

“We had a wonderful relationship with Heritage Of Pride. I would say Heritage Of Pride was one of the organizations we were closest with,” Brian E. Downey, president of the Gay Officers Action League (GOAL) told the New York Post.

Downey asserted that his organization is taking part in “ongoing” talks with the parade’s organizers and he is holding out hope there will be a breakthrough.

Prohibiting New York’s finest from taking part in the parade is a sticky issue for the Big Apple’s politicians and whether they should attend or not. Former Mayor Bill de Blasio did not attend the parade in 2021, calling the ban a “mistake,” according to the New York Post.

“Look, I fully appreciate the extraordinary history of Pride in this city and I honor what Pride has achieved over the years, I think that decision’s a mistake,” de Blasio stated at the time.

“First of all, we have to keep people safe, and it’s been an incredibly safe, positive event and we have to be mindful of continuing that,” he remarked. “Second of all … I believe in inclusion. And we’re talking about one of the issues is officers who are members of the LGBT community, wanting to march and express their pride and their solidarity with the community and their desire to keep changing the NYPD and changing the city.”

The first openly gay Republican ever elected to the chamber, Staten Island Councilman David Carr, has indicated that he will attend the parade unless police are blocked from taking part in it.

“I think if the police are not welcome at this event, and GOAL is not welcome, then I don’t see myself participating,” Carr remarked. “I think that [Mayor Adams] supported them when he was a member of the NYPD himself and so I am hopeful he will do everything he can to advocate for their inclusion.”

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