Pride flag raised in Abbotsford

Flag will fly from July 13 to 20

The rainbow pride flag was raised in Abbotsford on July 13.

The rainbow pride flag was raised in Abbotsford on July 13.



The rainbow pride flag was raised at Abbotsford city hall on Monday afternoon – but it may be the last time, after council adopted a policy at a Monday meeting outlining what flags can be raised in the future.

A group of about 40 people waited outside Abbotsford city hall and clapped as Mayor Henry Braun raised the flag at about 12:30 p.m.

A request had come to council in June, asking that the city fly the rainbow pride flag from July 13 to 20, to coincide with a pride celebration that will run July 17 to 19 at Trethewey House.

The events are organized by Out in the Valley, a society that organizes social events for the LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer) community, and the Fraser Valley Youth Society (FVYS), a non-profit charitable organization that provides services for LGBTQ+ and allied youth.

The decision met with backlash from some community members, who opposed council’s decision to let the flag fly.

Samantha Williams, director of operations with FVYS, said at the flag-raising that despite some opposition, they have received a lot of support from around the community.

She added that FVYS has had a great relationship with the city while planning pride events over the last three years.

“I think the city is sending a message that they’re supporting everyone in their community,” she said.

When council made the decision, Braun noted that the city had no policy on what flags can fly at city hall, but one was about 80 per cent developed by staff.

At the 3 p.m. executive meeting on Monday, council approved the policy, which sets out criteria for which flags will be raised on the city hall flagpoles in the future. These include the flag of the United Nations; the flag of a country recognized by the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, when an official representative is visiting; a flag of an official sister city; and any flag required to be flown by a contract.

The decision precluded a number of requests that came to council on Monday evening, calling for the flying of flags for a number of other interest groups.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A photo illustration shows a fountain planned for Mill Lake. (City of Abbotsford photo)
UPDATED: City approves $200K fountain for Mill Lake using donated funds

Project will improve lake quality and ecosystem, say Abbotsford city staff

Linnea Labbee outside the Chilliwack Law Courts on April 1, 2021 on day 16 of her trial in BC Supreme Court where she is charged in connection with the fatal hit-and-run of a 78-year-old woman on Mary Street on Dec. 1, 2016. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Crown seeking jail time for 72-year-old Chilliwack woman found guilty in fatal hit-and-run

Trial of Linnea Labbee who struck and killed 78-year-old woman in 2016 ended Monday

The Abbotsford IHOP, shown here on April 5, is now completely removed. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)
Abbotsford IHOP building taken down

Iconic restaurant had been on South Fraser Way for nearly 33 years

Abbotsford's Rick Hansen Secondary School is celebrating Vaisakhi virtually for 2021. (Submitted)
VIDEO: Abbotsford’s Rick Hansen Secondary School celebrates ‘Virtual Vaisakhi’

Production highlights local youth talent in anticipation of the start of annual festival on April 13

The Abbotsford Gogos are inviting local residents to watch a virtual concert in support of African grandmothers. The concert first airs on April 15. (Photo: Abbotsford Gogos Facebook page)
Abbotsford Gogos invite guests to virtual concert to support African grandmothers

Event first airs on April 15, featuring music, dance and storytelling

Burnaby MLA Raj Chouhan presides as Speaker of the B.C. legislature, which opened it spring session April 12 with a speech from the throne. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C. NDP promises more health care spending, business support in 2021 budget

John Horgan government to ‘carefully return to balanced budgets’

Surrey RCMP are seeking the public's help to locate three puppies stolen from a South Surrey home on April 10. (Surrey RCMP photos)
Puppies stolen during weekend break-and-enter in South Surrey

Surrey RCMP seeking public’s assistance in locating three American Bulldog puppies

A lady wears a sticker given out after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count slows after last week’s peak

3,219 new cases since Friday, 18 additional deaths

North Cowichan councillor Tek Manhas did not violate the municipality’s code of conduct by posting a sexist meme on Facebook, council concludes. (File photo)
B.C. municipality to take no action against councillor who posted sexist meme

Tek Manhas’s meme doesn’t violate North Cowichan council’s code of conduct, municipality concludes

Guinevere, lovingly referred to by Jackee Sullivan and her family as Gwenny, is in need of a gynecological surgery. The family is raising money to help offset the cost of the procedure. (Jackee Sullivan/Special to Langley Advance Times)
Langley lizard’s owners raise funds for gynecological surgery

The young reptile is scheduled for operation on Tuesday

—Image: contributed
Indoor wine tastings still allowed in B.C., not considered a ‘social gathering’

“Tasting is really just part of the retail experience. The analogy I use is you wouldn’t buy a pair of pants without trying them on.”

Mounties say they “corralled” four Ford Mustangs April 4 after an officer saw the muscle cars racing down 184 Street near 53 Avenue at about 10 p.m. (File Photo)
Mounties impound four Mustangs

Surrey RCMP say they seized four cars for street racing

A sign on a shop window indicates the store is closed in Ottawa, Monday March 23, 2020. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business is raising its estimate for the number of businesses that are considering the possibility of closing permanently. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Small business struggling amid COVID-19 pandemic looks for aid in Liberals’ budget

President Dan Kelly said it is crucial to maintain programs to help businesses to the other side of the pandemic

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read