How firefighters will mark Warwickshire Pride with online events

The event has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic but events will be taking place online
Warwickshire Pride logo.Warwickshire Pride logo.
Warwickshire Pride logo.

Due to the current circumstances, Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) is celebrating Warwickshire Pride a little differently this year.

To celebrate Warwickshire Pride last year, WFRS wrapped one of their fire appliances in rainbow colours and with the words: ‘Fire doesn’t discriminate and neither do we’ to show support for the LGBTQ+ community.

WFRS took the appliance to Warwickshire Pride, held in Leamington, with a whole host of activities taking place.

This year, due to the current pandemic, WFRS are celebrating Warwickshire Pride a bit differently and will be hosting a series of virtual webinars in partnership with colleagues at Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Royal Berkshire and Buckinghamshire fire and rescue services.

Talking about the virtual webinars, chief fire officer for Warwickshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service, Kieran Amos said: “Although we’re having to celebrate Pride a bit differently this year, we still wanted to be able to celebrate with the LGBTQ+ community and show our support in promoting equality and diversity within WFRS and across Warwickshire.

“We want to learn from the LGBTQ+ community with the aim of eliminating all discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

“Whether you are part of the LGBTQ+ community or you would like to learn more about how you can support, I would like to encourage everyone to sign up to a webinar so that we can all listen and learn together.”

Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) celebrating Warwickshire Pride.Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) celebrating Warwickshire Pride.
Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) celebrating Warwickshire Pride.

Cllr Andy Crump, portfolio holder for fire and rescue and community safety, said: “We hope that by taking part in virtual Pride events this year, all LGBTQ+ members of our community feel included, safe and supported by Warwickshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service.

“We want our organisation to be inclusive so we would like these webinars to promote equality, diversity and inclusion amongst our WFRS employees and the communities around us. We also hope that the learnings we will take away from the webinars will enable us to develop the way we work so that WFRS is inclusive and an employer of choice for the LGBTQ+ community.”

“The webinars will also be an opportunity for people to learn more about some of the disadvantages and negative experiences that the LGBTQ+ community have experienced because of their of sexual orientation and gender identity, so that we can all take these learnings with us going forwards.”

The Virtual Pride Webinars are open to everyone and are free to attend. For more details about each webinar or if you would like to register, visit Eventbrite - you have registered, you will receive a confirmation email with a link to access the live webinar from your laptop or mobile.

If you would like to find out more about how Warwickshire Fire and Rescue support and celebrate pride, please watch the video below from CFO Kieran Amos:

The web seminars are as follows:

Monday 17th August, 6.30pm to 8.00pm - Positive Action & Inclusion, hosted by Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service along with guest speakers Nick Slater (Stonewall), Rachel Burgin (Gloucestershire LGBT Reading Group) and Rachel Salmon (Inclusion Officer, at Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service)

Wednesday 19th August, 6.30pm to 8.00pm - Trans Awareness and Trans Acceptance, hosted by Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service along with guest speakers Charlotte Stacey (Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Firefighter case study), Dylan Bettles-Hill (Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue) and members from Warwickshire Pride

Friday 21st August, 6.30pm to 8.00pm - LGBTQ+ Hate Crime, hosted by Warwickshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service along with guest speakers Alex Gloster (Warwickshire County Council Hate Crime Partnership), Benjamin Smith (Chief Superintendent of Local Policing), Dan Browne (Chair at Warwickshire Pride), Junaid Hussain (CEO at Equip) and Ben Donagh (CYP Service Manager at Victim Support)