Australian activists are protesting the removal of Sydney’s Rainbow Crossing by putting up their own versions as part of the activism to promote LGBT inclusion in the country.
Activists have created their own “rainbow crossings” across Australia as part of the protest, which first gained steam online.
The crossings have also gone global in a show of solidarity, with home-made crossing taking to cities including London and New York.
James Brechey, who created the Facebook page, tweeted: ”I’m told sourcing chalk in nairobi is hard but here it is – our first #DIYrainbow in Kenya, AFRICAAAA!”
The project’s Facebook group, which is liked by almost 17,000 people, encourages supporters: “Don’t get angry, get chalking! Please share your pictures here!
“In farewell of the premature removal of Sydney’s Rainbow Crossing we made our own DIY Rainbow Crossing from chalk! Love to see more DIY rainbow crossings popping up in Australia and beyond!”
The New South Wales government and its Roads and Maritime Service has demanded the city spend some $35,000 to remove the rainbow flag, popularly known as Rainbow Crossing, because they claim it is a safety concern.
“¨”¨Ironically, police in Sydney have made no such argument, saying instead that the flag is a positive reminder of the city’s LGBT community.
“¨”¨The announcement came even as some 15,000 people signed a petition organized by MP Alex Greenwich to allow the crossing to remain as it has become a tourist point of interest.”¨”¨
The Rainbow Crossing was painted during the lead up to Sydney’s Mardi Gras Festival.
“¨”¨However, New South Wales Department of Roads claimed that, as some people had taken photos of themselves lying on the crossing, it encouraged unsafe behavior.”¨”¨”
New South Wales Benefits to the tune of over $30 Million dollars during the Mardi Gras Festival,” Greenwich said.
“Enforcing the removal an iconic tourist attraction that honors the LGBTI community would be a short-sighted and mean spirited move.”
“In light of the footage of a policing incidents at Mardi Gras that made global headlines, we need to do everything we can to show Sydney celebrates our gay and lesbian community.””¨”¨Either way, the crossing was removed.