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Why won’t the UK fly the rainbow flag for Pride?

Why won’t the UK fly the rainbow flag for Pride?

Outside the US Embassy in London’s Grosvenor Square two rainbow flags hang.

They acts as banners and frame the steps up to that iconic building, embracing all who enter.

Outside the US ambassador’s London residence in Regent’s Park the LGBTI flag flies strong and proud.

These flags are honoring Pride. For a few days the Americans are celebrating us and what we have all overcome. The Americans are standing shoulder to shoulder with LGBTI people from across the globe.

Symbols matter. The flags show respect. A message is sent. LGBTI persecution will end. Equality can prevail.

The British Foreign Office refuses to fly the flag. Why has the UK missed this opportunity? The flag flew last year.

What does the decision to no longer fly the LGBT flag over the Foreign Office say about Britain’s commitment to those who never have the choice, let alone chance, to march for LGBT Pride. Those whose who are daily derided, bullied, tormented, ridiculed and disdained.

Millions of LGBT people are criminalized across the globe for same-sex intimacy, loving who they love and for being who they are. Their lives are shattered.

And the UK stays silent on the day when they need the support of Her Majesty’s Government the most.

Jonathan Cooper is chief executive of the Human Dignity Trust.