Tallahassee, FL — Initially celebrated for only a day, known as “Gay Pride Day,” the day has now evolved into a month-long series of events — including pride parades, workshops, concerts, and much more.
As we near the close of Pride Month, remember the three Black and Latina leaders of the LGBTQ+ movement.
The Stonewall riots in New York were a turning point for the Gay Liberation Movement. At just 17-years-old, Sylvia Riveria helped lead the Stonewall Riots.
The lifelong transgender activist was said to throw the second cocktail at police who were raiding the Stonewall Inn.
Later on, Sylvia, a Latina transgender woman, co-founded the Gay Liberation Front, a number of gay liberation groups that fight racism, sexism, homophobia, etc.
Sylvia also co-founded Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR) with another activist, Marsha P. Johnson.
Marsha P. Johnson
Johnson was one of the leaders of the Stonewall Riots at just 23 years old. Johnson, a Black trans woman, helped lead the LGBTQ+ movement for nearly 25 years. In 1970, a year after the Stonewall Riots, she co-founded STAR with Sylvia.
STAR was a shelter for homeless transgender youth, the first LGBTQ+ youth shelter in North America, and the first organization led by transgender women of color in America.
Johnson advocated for trans and homeless people, people living with HIV/AIDS, the incarcerated, sex workers.
Miss Major Griffin-Gracy
Miss Major Griffin-Gracy is a Black transgender woman who also engaged in the Stonewall Riots. A police officer knocked Griffin-Gracy unconscious and broke her jaw before being brought into custody during the first night of riots.
After her five years of imprisonment, she continued her activism by becoming the executive director at Transgender, Gender Variant and Intersex Justice Project (TGIJP).