PEI

Pride flag raised for first time at Charlottetown naval base

The Pride colours are flying high this week in a place they never have before. Naval base HMCS Queen Charlotte hoisted the pride flag Sunday for the first time in history.

'To know that they are proud of being allies to the LGBTQ community is really inspiring'

The Pride flag flies beside the official flags at HMCS Queen Charlotte. (Natalia Goodwin/CBC)

The Pride colours are flying high this week in a place they never have before.

Naval base HMCS Queen Charlotte hoisted the pride flag Sunday for the first time in history.

As a unit we're tremendously excited about it.'- Lt.-Cmdr. Rob Alain

"As a unit we're tremendously excited about it," said Lt.-Cmdr. Rob Alain. "Canadian society has evolved and the Canadian Armed Forces has evolved."

The decision came from a directive written last month from Navy Reserve headquarters that all divisions were to fly the flag this year. Another directive from chief of Defence staff said that all units in the forces had permission to fly it too -- subject to local commanders' approval.

“Canadian society has evolved and the Canadian Armed Forces has evolved,” says Lt.-Cmdr. Rob Alain. (Natalia Goodwin/CBC)

The public was invited to the raising Sunday.

"We could have chosen to do it in a less formal format but that would have missed an opportunity for us to reach out the LGBTQ community here on PEI and show them that the Canadian Armed Forces and the Royal Canadian Navy are committed to diversity,"  said Alain. "We wanted to show them that HMCS Queen Charlotte is also committed to that."

Flag will fly during Pride week

The flag will fly at the base for the duration of Pride week, which wraps up next Saturday.

"To know that they are proud of being allies to the LGBTQ community is really inspiring to us and we're very thankful," said Chelsey Rogerson of Pride PEI.

With files from Natalia Goodwin

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