Compromise allows LGBTQ groups in Provo parade

Jun 14, 2018, 9:43 PM | Updated: Jun 15, 2018, 12:18 pm

PROVO, Utah – Amid growing controversy, organizers of Provo’s Fourth of July parade announced late Thursday that a compromise had been reached to allow five LGBTQ groups to participate.

“The applications we got needed to be reworked to come into the focus of the July Fourth mission that the festival has,” said Paul Warner with America’s Freedom Festival at Provo. “They were willing to do that and that made all the difference.”

Warner called the agreement a “win-win” and said it would work with the groups to provide them with a float.

An aerial view of the 2017 Fourth of July parade put on by America’s Freedom Festival at Provo.

“I’m thrilled that the Freedom Festival and LGBT groups have been able to come to a compromise on parade entries,” Provo Mayor Michelle Kaufusi said in a statement. “When I heard that they had been outright denied, I said that we can do better. This feels better.”

The Freedom Festival originally said the five LGBTQ group’s applications were denied because they did not meet specific requirements. The decision sparked criticism.

“The Fourth of July is a celebration for all Americans — including LGBTQ Utahns,” Equality Utah executive director Troy Williams said in a press release after learning that the groups were denied entry to the parade. “We have fought hard to earn the rights and privileges of citizenship. This staggering bigotry is unbecoming of both Provo and Utah.”

Representatives from five LGBTQ groups that were denied entry to the parade held a press conference Thursday morning.

Freedom Festival officials invited the LGBTQ groups to their headquarters Thursday afternoon to discuss their applications. Two hours later, the groups emerged saying the meeting had been tense but productive.

“We really negotiated in good faith on all sides,” said Kendall Wilcox with Mormons Building Bridges. “There are still hurt feelings on all sides but we did reach a compromise. All the LGBT groups will be represented in the parade.”

In addition to Mormons Building Bridges, the other groups that originally had their parade entries denied include: Encircle, Provo Pride, Queer Meals, and Provo PFlag.

“I think though they are more open to being accepting to us now, the hurt’s still there,” said Jordan Sgro, the chief program officer at Encircle. “I do think this meeting was a little healing for us, and I think it will take more and more and more of this.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

(KSL TV)...
Lauren Steinbrecher

SLC airport reports few delays for post-Thanksgiving travel

Major U.S. cities were hit with severe weather Sunday, leading to hundreds of flight delays and cancellations on one of the year's busiest travel days.
9 hours ago
(Mountain Green Fire Protection District)...
Josh Ellis

Pilot walks away from Morgan County plane crash

Authorities say a pilot "miraculously" walked away from a plane crash in Morgan County.
9 hours ago
Salt Lake city Fire at the vacant home. (KSL-TV)...
Michael Houck

Firefighters extinguish fire at vacant Salt Lake City house

First responders took down a fire at a vacant and boarded-up house Sunday evening. 
1 day ago
Trent Anderson and his 27-year-old horse, Duncan during the parade before the car hit them....
Shelby Lofton

EXCLUSIVE: Car crashes through barricades, hits horse and rider during Christmas parade

A man and his horse are recovering after being hit by an alleged DUI driver during a Spanish Fork Christmas Parade Saturday night.
1 day ago
A trailer rollover blocks two left lanes of I-15. (Utah Department of Transportation)...
Michael Houck

Trailer rollover blocks portion of I-15, suspect in police custody

A person is in custody after attempting to flee the scene of a car crash involving a trailer Saturday afternoon, police say.
1 day ago
Massive blue ice sculptures with a starry sky....
Brooke Williams

Ice castles are constructed by hand one icicle at a time

Cold temperatures means construction on the Ice Castles at Soldier Hollow Nordic Center has officially begun, and it's coming together one icicle at a time.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Compromise allows LGBTQ groups in Provo parade