Follow The Rainbow: City of Lansing Surprises Pridegoers with Announcement of Permanent Rainbow Crosswalks

By |2018-06-24T09:55:27-04:00June 24th, 2018|Michigan, News|

LANSING — Lansing’s new Mayor Andy Schor was in rare form as he served as Michigan Pride’s Grand Marshall Saturday. He rejected a ride in a convertible, opting instead to join a bevy of supporters and his family walking the route wearing rainbow tie-dye T-shirts emblazoned with his name and new title.
Schor was elected to the Mayor’s office last November and replaced three-term Mayor and former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Virg Bernero. Schor had previously served on the Ingham County Commission and in the state house. He’s been a staunch supporter of LGBTQ equality and was the first state representative to co-sponsor legislation to reform Michigan’s outdated HIV felony law.
He was one of a dozen local elected officials on-hand for the parade, which started at the Lou Adado Riverfront Park across from Lansing Community College. The parade kicked off at a brightly colored crosswalk painted in the colors the Philadelphia Pride flag.
Once at the Capitol, Schor thanked his chief of staff Samantha Harkins and Lansing Association for Human Rights President Emily Dievendorf for the idea and action in painting the cross walk. He noted that Harkins “got up early” to apply the paint herself with the help of others. LAHR and the Salus Center joined forces to seek the installation of the crosswalks from the Mayor’s office.
Then, Schor stunned allies by announcing the rainbow crosswalks would become a standard a permanent fixture in the capitol city. In his speech Schor said that four crosswalks in downtown Lansing would be painted the color of a Pride flag unveiled by Philadelphia in 2017. That flag is includes additional colors to reflect more accurately the racial diversity of the LGBT community.
“Lansing is fun, exciting and welcoming to everyone,” Schor said in a statement to BTL. “What better way to showcase that than to paint some of our crosswalks the colors of the rainbow, which is inclusive of all of our residents and visitors! This small gesture is to show that everyone is not only welcome but is also celebrated in Michigan’s Capital city!”
Valeria Marchand, a spokeswoman for Schor, was unable to provide a specific timeline for the finalization of the painted crosswalks by deadline Tuesday.
The installations are set to be in place by the end of the month and will point toward downtown from the north, south, east and west sides of town,” LAHR officials posted Saturday on their Facebook page. “The direction of the crosswalks is intended to by a symbolic welcoming of the LGBTQIA community as downtown Lansing is uniquely the center for the legislature and the LGBTQIA community will find their own Mayor’s office. The gesture is one way to LGBTQIA voices in downtown Lansing are welcome and should be heard here.”
An estimated 2,000 people rallied at the Capitol Saturday afternoon, despite a brief but solid rain. Speakers included Schor, State Sen. Curtis Hertel, Jr. and more.

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