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First as `Rainbow' Chan leads gay parade

Candy Chan

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

More than 3,000 marchers are expected to turn out for this year's Hong Kong Pride Parade on November 10, to be led by the first lawmaker to declare he is gay.

Dubbed the "Rainbow Ambassador," People Power's Raymond Chan Chi-chuen, a disc jockey better known as "Slow Beat," will lead the territory's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community from Causeway Bay to Chater Garden starting at 3pm.

Chan admitted his sexual preference after he was elected to the Legislative Council last month.

"Opposition to the gay community is basically a result of misunderstanding," he said.

"Only through the promotion of a more open-minded education will the basic rights of homosexuals be protected."

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The chief director of the parade's committee, Connie Chan Man-wai, said sexual minorities face discrimination in the workplace and especially in sectors like education and social work which uphold conservative values.

"We would like the marchers to dress in outfits representing different careers to promote sexual equality in the workplace," she said.

The parade started in 2008, attracting about 1,000 participants, and has gained in popularity, with about 1,800 taking part in 2009 and more than 2,500 last year.

The parade - with the motto "dare to love" - will end with concert performances and carnival booths. Performers will include pop singer Anthony Wong Yiu-ming, who has also come out as gay.


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