City Councilor of Sydney, Christine Forster, defended herself against allegations that her original opposition to a rainbow crossroad painted on famous Oxford Street was “mean spirited” and anti-LGBT.
The crossroad was painted for Sydney’s 35th annual Mardi Gras parade, on March 2, which also serves as the liberal city’s LGBT Pride celebration.
Councilor Forster, who is a lesbian, came under fire because she didn’t support the creation of the rainbow crosswalk.
In a statement following the controversy, Forster wrote that her initial decision was based on, “cost to ratepayers” which “could not be justified on the basis that the crossing would only be in place until the end of March.”
She said that it wasn’t a good use of money if the crossroad wasn’t going to be permanent.
Member of Parliament for Sydney, Alex Greenwich, supported the crossroad, and said, “lesbians and gay men were beaten and bashed on Oxford Street in 1978, and homophobic violence was rife for years. To now have our flag on our street celebrates how far we have come and is a tribute to the battles we have won.”
Now that the crossroad is finished, Forster said she would ask the state government for an approval to keep it long-term.
Since the crossroad was such an eye catcher at this past weekend’s celebration Greenwich has also made moves to make it permanent by starting a petition on change.org, which has already received 6,000 signatures.