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NEWS | May 31, 2022

JBSA, DOD honor LGBTQ+ community during Pride Month

502nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Joint Base San Antonio and the entire Department of Defense will join the Nation in paying tribute to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer community during Pride Month June 1-30 highlighting the way LGBTQ service members and civilians have strengthened America’s military.  

To bring recognition to LGBTQ service members and DOD civilians, and to recognize their contributions, the 11th Annual LBGTQ+ Pride Ceremony in the Pentagon will be broadcast live from 9 to 11 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time June 7 at https://www.dvidshub.net/webcast/28901.  

Speakers will include Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks; Assistant Secretary of Readiness, Shawn Skelly; Deputy Secretary of the Air Force, Gina Ortiz Jones; and Deputy Chief of Acquisition Policies and Procedures, Lt. Col. Bree Fram.  

To recognize Pride Month at JBSA, commemorative posters will be displayed at all JBSA libraries and Military and Family Readiness Centers.  

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III is proud to celebrate and honor the service, commitment, and sacrifice of LGBTQ personnel in and out of uniform.  At his direction, the Defense Department has taken concerted action to promote and protect the human rights of LGBTQ persons around the globe and remains committed to building a diverse, equitable and inclusive force.   

LGBTQ Pride Month was created in 1994 to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan, New York, considered the turning point for the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States. The riots were largely considered to be the single most important event leading to the LGBTQ liberation movement and the modern fight for LGBTQ+ rights in the United States.

On June 28, 1969, police raided The Stonewall Inn, a gay bar and recreational tavern located in New York City. Tensions quickly escalated as patrons and supporters resisted. This was viewed as police harassment and persecution of the LGBTQ+ community. This uprising marked the beginning of a movement to outlaw discriminatory laws and practices against LGBTQ+  Americans.

Educational organizations in the United States led the way and in 1994 when they designated the first LGBT History Month. In 1995, a resolution passed by the General Assembly of the National Education Association included LGBT History Month within a list of commemorative months.

In June 2016, President Barack Obama announced the designation of the first national monument to LGBTQ rights. The Stonewall National Monument encompasses Christopher Park, The Stonewall Inn, and the surrounding streets and sidewalks that were the sites of the 1969 Stonewall Riots.

To date, four presidents of the United States have officially declared a pride month. In 1999 and 2000, President Bill Clinton declared the month of June as "Gay & Lesbian Pride Month”. In 2011, President Obama declared the month of June as LGBTQ+ Pride Month for each year he was in office.

In 2019, President Donald Trump became the first Republican president to acknowledge LGBTQ Pride Month through a tweet rather than an official proclamation. In 2021, the current U.S. President, Joe Biden, declared the month of June as LGBTQ+ Pride Month.

For additional information, contact the JBSA Civilian Personnel Section at 210-221-1408.