On split vote Antioch Council approves flying “Progress Pride” flag at City Hall through end of year

The “Progressive Pride” flag with colors representing the various sexual and gender choices of individuals in the LGBTQI+ community will fly over Antioch City Hall through the end of the year.

Barbanica, Ogorchock vote against saying it prevents flying flags of other groups

By Allen D. Payton

Antioch Mayor Lamar Thorpe read his resolution “In Honor of LGBTQI+ Solidarity” (see below) during Tuesday night’s council meeting and then signed it. But the city council did not take a vote on it.

The council did take a vote on displaying the “Progress Pride” flag at City Hall from Tuesday night through the end of the year.

During public comments, one resident spoke against flying the flag and one spoke in favor.

“I am a worship leader,” said Robrielle Beverly. “I do not agree with having the flag. We have the United States of America, the California flag, the City of Antioch flag. Why do we need any other flag? Everyone is represented by those flags.”

She then read from Genesis 9 saying, “And God said, ‘This is the sign of the covenant I am making between Me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come. I have set My rainbow in the clouds, and it will be a sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. That’s the Word of God. Thank you.’”

Resident Lucas Stuart-Chilcote spoke next saying, “I just want to thank the council.” He held up a Progress Pride flag and said it hangs at his house.

“It is a really great sign of solidarity,” he continued. “Flags represent compassion, representation, love for a group that does not feel accepted. I hope you hold that in your heart when we step outside.” He was referring to the brief ceremony following the council’s vote to raise that flag on the pole at City Hall.

District 4 Councilwoman Monica Wilson made the motion to approve flying the Progress Pride flag and approving the display of the flag at City Hall through the end of the year. District 1 Councilwoman Tamisha Torres-Walker seconded the motion.

Mayor Pro Tem Mike Barbanica said, “I’ve given a lot of thought over the past two weeks…and I’ve talked to a lot of people. I went to one of my friends who is affected by this and asked them to explain this to you. If your house is on fire, and you live next door, but yours isn’t on fire…it really kind of enlightened me.”

“I talked to my priest, and he said, ‘you would not be outside the thought of our church if you side with this,’” he continued. “The problem I do have is that we’re doing this for an entire year. I spoke to a veteran, and he asked, ‘what about us?’ I spoke to a firefighter and he said, ‘what about us?’ I wish we would have done this for ‘Pride Month’. I would have made the motion. But my problem is this is for an entire year.”

“I totally agree with Mayor Pro Tem Mike Barbanica,” District 3 Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock said. “If we fly this, we cannot fly any other flag throughout the year.”

“Our flag policy exists,” Thorpe said. “What I can say is our youth out there need to see solidarity, especially our transgender youth. When you’re a self-proclaimed community leader, calling people delusional is just wrong. I’m perfectly comfortable voting for this.”

The motion passed 3-2 with Barbanica and Ogorchock voting no.

“The Rainbow Coalition provided a flag, and I just want to thank them,” City Clerk Ellie Householder added. The council then took a 10-minute recess to walk outside and raise the multi-colored flag on the City Hall flagpole. Ogorchock did not participate.

City of Antioch





LGBTQI+ Solidarity resolution ACC041222

WHEREAS, the City of Antioch embraces diversity and stands firmly against any form of discrimination and hate based on sexual orientation or gender identity and expression;

WHEREAS, the City of Antioch values the uniqueness of our residents and stands with the youth, and their families, who deserve to be who they are, treated with dignity, and to receive equal treatment and protection;

WHEREAS, discrimination against the transgender community is not based in science and is intended to sow division and instill animosity toward our fellow Americans; and

WHEREAS, the City condemns any attack on the transgender community and reaffirms our commitment to being an inclusive environment;

WHEREAS, the Progress Pride flag was designed by Daniel Quasar who adapted the original Pride flag of the rainbow and represents a concerted move towards a more tolerant and intersectional LGBTQI+ community; and

WHEREAS, the black and brown lines of the Progress Pride flag represent marginalized people of color within the queer community, while the pink, blue and white arrow shape represents the transgender community.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, LAMAR A. THORPE, Mayor of the City of Antioch, hereby condemn violence against the transgender and nonbinary community in all forms and commit to advocating for the well-being and safety of the transgender and nonbinary community.

APRIL 12, 2022

the attachments to this post:

LGBTQI+ Solidarity resolution ACC041222

“Progressive Pride” flag

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