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Last Updated: Saturday, 19 June, 2004, 16:06 GMT 17:06 UK
Pride for landmark rainbow parade
Gay pride march
Live music events were staged at various venues throughout the city
About 800 gay men and women took to the streets of Glasgow for the city's 10th annual Pride parade on Saturday.

Glasgow was awash with colour and the sound of whistles and drums echoed through the streets as the parade made its way through the city.

Participants carried rainbow-coloured flags and banners calling for inclusion and awareness of sexual diversity.

Politicians and community activists spoke out in support of the Pride movement in a rally address.

Messages of support

Green MSP Patrick Harvie, Labour's Pauline McNeill and Liberal Democrat MSP Margaret Smith and Scottish Socialist Frances Curran were among those who addressed the gathered crowd.

First Minister Jack McConnell, Scottish National Party leader John Swinney and the Scottish police service also sent messages of support for the event.

Mr Harvie told how shortly after his election last May he was warned not to campaign for civil partnerships for homosexual couples - now due to be introduced - to avoid becoming labelled as "the gay MSP".

The big challenge now is about winning hearts and minds and changing attitudes
Patrick Harvie MSP

But he said: "Having thought about it at the time I quickly came to the conclusion that this comment would never have been made to a black politician who was campaigning against racial inequality, and that's why I ignored the advice.

"We've come a long way in a generation and Pride has played a key role in that.

"Progress would not have come without people taking to the streets, and that is why it's right to continue that tradition.

"But beyond the legislative agenda, the big challenge now is about winning hearts and minds and changing attitudes."

The former Moderator of the Church of Scotland's General Assembly, the Very Rev Professor Iain Torrance, was awarded the Pride Scotia "Friend for Life" award following his attack on homophobia within the Kirk at a sermon last Christmas.

Keith Cowan of the Equality Network, which nominated Professor Torrance, said the award was a recognition of his efforts to promote equality and the inclusion of gay people in Scotland.

Live music events were later staged at various venues throughout the city as part of the Pride festival following the afternoon parade.

The event was organised by volunteers at Pride Scotia with the aim of affirming the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and transgender (LGBT) people, and supporters in Scotland.

Pride Scotia spokesman Menelas Siafakas said: "This year celebrates 10 years of Pride diversity in Scotland and we hope that all political parties will support our call for greater equality for all."

The parade was staged for the first time in Glasgow back in June 1995.

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