WATERVILLE –It’s been 50 years since the Stonewall Riots in New York.
Many people consider that the first time members of the LGBTQ+ community stood up for equality.
Because of that, June is National Pride Month, meaning pride festivals will be happening across the state.
On Sunday, more than 200 people attended the Central Maine Pride Festival.
The festival had resources, food trucks, games, and other activities.
Organizers said the inclusive environment is important since there aren’t many spaces designated for the LGBTQ+ community.
“Since the past presidential election, 8 in 10 young people in Maine schools are reporting an increase in verbal and physical harassment in schools,” Christopher O’Connor, the Director of Development for Equality Maine told us.
That’s why he said it’s important to be a good ally.
“There are LGBT people all around you,” O’Connor added. “You need to do everything you can to be respectful and create safe spaces wherever you go.”
While everyone in the community has different experiences, one person we spoke with said they all have something in common.
“It does get better and you do matter. There are plenty of people that will reaffirm and remind you. You exist. You are valid,” said Mathieu Cutler.
A pride event will also be held in Bangor on June 22nd..