Not everybody is feeling the love.
Earlier this week, international clothing retailer Primark announced it would be selling a new Pride collection in selected stores across the UK. The range of products includes T-shirts, face paints, pins, and more, and 20 per cent of profits on items will be donated to LGBTQ+ charity Stonewall.
We’re delighted to announce we will be working with @Primark on a new range! #ComeOutForLGBT this pride season, with 20% from full-priced Stonewall marked products donated directly to us, to support the work that we do to improve the lives of LGBT people: https://t.co/UvcpBbphdY pic.twitter.com/Adie72csS1
— Stonewall (@stonewalluk) May 21, 2018
Whilst the partnership is a vast improvement on Primark’s Pride campaign last year, of which no profits were donated to any LGBTQ+ charity or organisation, the range has still been met with some criticism.
Newcastle Pride organisers have called out the retailer for not doing enough to support local Pride organisations, especially as some of the products name out cities with their own Pride benefits.
Stephen Willis, festival director of Newcastle Pride, told QWEERIST that “considering Primark is tailoring the range to the cities they are selling them in, their support may have been better allocated by partnering with local organisations so they could help to sustain future Prides.”
Willis added that:
It is great that a big company like Primark wants to lend their support to the LGBT community but I do worry about the impact this will have on the community led organisations like ourselves up and down the country.
Stonewall do an amazing job but they are a national organisation with a large presence, whereas local Prides are more often than not organised by volunteers with a lack of sponsorship and funding.
Many local Pride organisations, including Newcastle Pride, often find that they have to scale down aspects of their event due to a lack of funding. “Many Prides rely on generating income from selling merchandise but if Primark are selling their own range at discount prices, this will direct much needed funds away from actual Prides, which are struggling as it is,” Willis commented.
This year’s Newcastle Pride takes place 20 – 22 July, under a big top tent at Nuns Moor Park, with a huge musical line-up, including headlining performances from Alexandra Burke and S Club. The event is free to attend, but those wanting to support Newcastle Pride can do so by making a donation, buying merchandise or upgrading to Golden Circle or VIP tickets right here.