What We Are Doing Instead of a Parade for Pride This Year

BARBARI Brand, Thoughts

To help support transgender health and recovery, please check out our recovery kit fundraiser, which will be donated to the Q Center in Portland, Oregon by the end of the month.

Hello, hi all, happy PRIDE MONTH. Here at BARBARI we have members of the LGBTQ+ community living, working, and creating with us, so this is a particularly close-to-heart celebration. Not to mention our cofounder, Meryl Montgomery, was raised by lesbian parents who were active in the Portland queer activism community of the 90s. Read more about her upbringing in one of our throwback posts here (teaser, it involves Neil Patrick Harris in a hot-tub). 

52 years after the Stonewall Riots and we still have a lot of progress that needs to be done. Discrimination against the gay community, particularly black and POC, remains high. For those of you who are not familiar with the history, half a century ago it was still considered illegal to be a member of the LGBTQ+ community in New York City. Police were constantly raiding gay bars, and lovers of the same sex were not allowed to hold hands in public. Although the raids are over, the discrimination is not. 1 in 3 LGBTQ people reported experiencing discrimination [source]. Additionally, Trans people, especially Trans humans of color experience a disproportionately high rate of hate crimes and physical assaults. 

Trump did his damage to the queer communities, including banning trans humans from participating in the U.S. Military. Just last month, Tennessee implemented yet another harmful and dangerous law forbidding transgender people to use restrooms aligning with their gender identity. Over in Arkansas, parents who support their transgender children’s gender affirming medical care are labeled as ‘child abusers’ and are subject to jail time. This is insane. It is not enough to wave a rainbow flag. Companies and institutions alike must actively defy these laws.  As Brunch Club Mag pointed out in our last blog, simply by living authentically, trans people face the highest rates of unemployment, suicide, violence, and discrimination in healthcare, housing, politics and society. 

Although there is so much work to be done, we have come a long way since a mere generation ago, and for that, we want to CELEBRATE with a tall, loud, and proud parade of love. Thanks to COVID-19 (get vaxed, everybody!) large celebratory crowds are not quite acceptable or safe just yet. Which is why we’re looking to ‘celebrate’ things a little differently this year.


1) Curating 50-100 recovery kits for The Q Center to support Trans Health. Throughout the month of June, we are collecting recovery items such as:

– CBD Products: edibles, tinctures, transdermals, and topicals
– Reading & Entertainment: magazines, books, puzzles and word-games, notebooks, coloring books, coloring pencils and/or markers 
– Home & Comfort: toothbrushes, cozy socks, travel pillows, eye masks, cooling/heating pads, water bottles/mugs with lids

2) If you would like to get involved, please make a monetary contribution of any size HERE. With every donation, we’ll send you a 2-pack CBD Spliff as a thank you for your support. Any remaining funds will be donated directly to Marsha P. Johnson Fund which provides microgrants for Trans individuals to assist with housing, medical bills, and other emergency costs. 

3) Dancing everyday to BRUNCH CLUB PLAYLIST  which features transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming artists, musicians and producers exclusively.

We love you all, and love our LGBTQ2SIA+ fam. Wishing you all a happy pride, and hope we get to dance together to celebrate soon! We’ve listed a few of our favorite queer-owned companies below to make our online shopping experience even gayer. 

About The Q Center: As the largest LGBTQ+ community center in the Pacific Northwest, Q Center proudly serves the LGBTQ2SIA+ communities of Portland Metro and Southwest Washington. Their drop-in and event space on North Mississippi Avenue is a frequent first stop for new arrivals in Portland, and for longtime residents who are newly out or questioning their sexual or gender identity. Q Center also serves as an information hub for friends, partners, community, and family members of LGBTQ2SIA+ individuals.