The Elk Grove City Council on May 25 unanimously adopted a resolution amending the city’s flag policy to include the Progress Pride flag among its approved flags that can be flown on city-owned property.
That flag symbolizes lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex and asexual pride, and LGBTQIA+ social movements.
The specific request, which was unanimously recommended by the city’s Diversity and Inclusion Commission last April, is for the Progress Pride flag to be displayed during Pride Month outside Elk Grove City Hall at 8401 Laguna Palms Way.
A monthlong celebration held every June, Pride Month commemorates the June 1969 police raid targeting gay patrons at the Stonewall Inn in New York.
The city’s flag policy, which was adopted in 2019, also allows the U.S. national flag, the California state flag and the Elk Grove city flag to be flown on city-owned property.
Additionally included on the approved flag list are site-specific flags for display at the District56 center’s Veterans Grove. Those flags are the five U.S. military branch flags, and the prisoner-of-war/missing-in-action flag.
The change to the city’s flag policy regarding the Progress Pride flag corresponds with similar actions taken by federal state and local agencies, including the Cosumnes Community Services District (CSD). Last year, the CSD approved the annual flying of the rainbow flag at its administration building during the month of June.
Elk Grove Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen spoke about why she believes the flag amendment is important.
“This is about really living up to what we say: an inclusive community, a city welcome to all,” she said. “So, I am proud that this was a community-led effort, and that’s really important that the Diversity and Inclusion Commission brought this to our city. This is what diversity and inclusion looks like.”
Singh-Allen, who was visibly emotional, shared that she has a niece “who recently came out as trans.”
“This is truly a city welcome to all, and I’m just so proud to be sitting here right now in this special moment in time,” she said.
Vice Mayor Darren Suen also mentioned that he has his own familial connection, noting that he is the father of a transgender child.
“In knowing people in the community, as well, who also have children that are part of the LGBTQ community, you know, all of us here in Elk Grove, I mean, we’re one big family,” he said. “And so, how can we not demonstrate how much we accept our own children?
“It’s a flag that will just show to the rest of the world and the community that we feel safe here, our kids feel safe here and included here. To me, it’s an easy answer.”
Jace Huggins, a Diversity and Inclusion Commission commissioner who identified himself as a transgender person, said that by having the Progress Pride flag displayed at City Hall, he believes it serves as a representation that Elk Grove is a city that demonstrates “in actions, we see you, we want you here and we’re proud of you.”
While the rainbow flag has a long history, the Progress Pride flag is a relatively new flag.
Based on the rainbow flag, which was created in 1978, the Progress Pride flag was introduced 40 years later by nonbinary American artist and designer Daniel Quasar.
That flag was created to celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community and represent a more inclusive society.
According to a city staff report, the brown and black stripes on the left portion of the Progress Pride flag symbolize marginalized LGBTQIA+ communities of color. The pink, light blue and white colors represent the transgender community.