More than 15,000 revelers gathered at an LGBTQ rally near government headquarters on Sunday, organisers estimate.
Hong Kong’s largest gay equality and diversity event attracted celebrities, diplomatic dignitaries and corporate supporters. The colourful annual rally at Tamar site is an “all-inclusive event advocating for diversity and love equality”, organiser Pink Dot said.
Local celebrities Gregory Wong, Anthony Wong and Denise Ho were present alongside US Consul General Clifford Hart, who urged Hong Kongers to “move conversations forward and change mindsets”.
Chairman of the Equal Opportunities Commission Dr York Chow said: “As advocates for diversity and equality, we hope to see further communication on the issue of same-sex marriage as we understand it is prominent issue today.”
Hong Kong remains years behind other international cities on the LGBTQ front. Homosexuality was legalised in 1991 and the age of consent was equalised for gay couples in 2006. In 2008, a judge upheld a ruling against RTHK for broadcasting a programme about homosexuality which failed to give air-time to homophobic counter viewpoints. And, until as recently as 2009, cohabiting gay couples were not recognised in the Domestic Violence Ordinance.
Anti-discrimination laws remain flimsy for LGBTQ workers and same-sex marriage and civil unions are illegal. There are still no specific laws targeting hate crimes directed against the Hong Kong gay community.