Sunday 5th June 2022 was a huge day for the LBGTQ+ community in Thailand. For the first time in almost 16 years, pride was able to be celebrated in the country’s capital, Bangkok. The Naruemit – Thai word for creation – Pride 2022 event, was organized by incredible NGOs which promote and advocate LBGTQ+ rights.
The rejuvenation of pride in Thailand was brought on as parliament considers improving lawful rights for same-sex couples. The cabinet will soon vote on a bill that proposes giving same-sex unions almost the same legal rights as heterosexual couples. Many are apprehensive about the potential outcome of the vote, with recent setbacks from the government progressing in this area.
The parade provided a space for citizens to have their voices heard about this issue, shouting that they believe in these potential upcoming law changes. Thousands took to the streets carrying banners and flags and expressing their inner selves. Many participated in chants demanding rights for same-sex marriages and sex workers.
The highlight of the event was the marriage between same-sex couple Anticha Sangchai and Vorawan Ramwan. Wearing puffy white gowns, the pair carried out their wedding ceremony amid the parade. “Everyone has the right of raising a family, love, and marriage with anyone they love,” Anticha told AFP. “Why can’t we do that as a human being?”
Maysa Petkam, a competitor in the transgender beauty pageant Miss Tiffany Universe also added: “I don’t want people to think we are different. We don’t want more rights than other genders, we only want basic rights. I wish same-sex marriage law passes so that there will be laws that protect and decrease gender inequality.”
Amid pride month, another parade full of glamor, glitz, and glitter is planned to take place on 26th June 2022 called “Songkla Pride.” As with Naruemit Pride, this event aims to bring social attention to issues such as marriage inequality and social injustice, while providing an inclusive environment for expression and empowerment.