Message from a Volunteer Member

As an aside, I have a message for all my fellow foreigners who came to the Pride. All of you students and expats and immigrants and maybe some Japanese citizens out there. All of you who came yesterday with the page automatically translated to other languages. 

This year’s pride had a record attendance in general, but personally I was absolutely chuffed to finally see Brazilians and Chinese and Filipinos and Taiwanese and Peruvians and Westerners and however many more of you there were who I did not get a chance to say Happy Pride to. I feel that as foreigners we tend to stay away from Japanese matters, so getting ethnic and national minorities to participate has been an ongoing challenge. 

However, this is our town, too. We’re all the same queers regardless of nationality. Over 3% of Aichi Prefecture’s population holds a foreign passport, a higher percentage than any other prefecture (except for Tokyo). And were just as likely to be queer as any other group. Pride is for everyone, and that includes us. We share the experience of being queer in Japan, and to top that we all have the experiences and problems and celebrations of our own group. 

This year’s Pride is over, but there will be more prides to come. Please, if you have the time and desire, give us a shout and get involved. I would love to see the pride page in every language that we speak. I would love for everyone to open it up and *know* that they are welcome, without having to question it. I would love for all the information to be more readily available and accessible. I would love to be able to say Happy Pride in all the languages that you people speak. 

Everyone is welcome to Pride. If you want to make it feel more open to people like yourself, do not hesitate to volunteer in the future. Representation is a heavy favour to ask, but it matters oh so much. 

See you next Pride!

-Ioana, your local Romanian Nagoyan queer.