Unitec to spon­sor pride pa­rade

Central Leader - - NEWS -

Unitec is tak­ing pride of place in Auck­land’s celebration of the rain­bow com­mu­nity.

The ter­tiary ed­u­ca­tion provider has climbed on board as the prin­ci­pal spon­sor of the Auck­land Pride Fes­ti­val 2014.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Rick Ede says the move re­flects the in­sti­tute’s com­mit­ment to cre­at­ing a di­verse yet in­clu­sive cul­ture across all three of its cam­puses.

‘‘This ex­cit­ing new part­ner­ship will al­low Unitec to pub­licly recog­nise and cel­e­brate diver­sity,’’ Dr Ede says. ‘‘We are hon­oured to join with the Auck­land Pride Fes­ti­val to help them de­velop the mana and stand­ing of the Rain­bow Com­mu­nity in Auck­land and Aotearoa at large.’’

Auck­land Pride Fes­ti­val Trust co-chair Me­gan Cun­ning­hamA­dams says the or­gan­is­ers are thrilled with the deal.

‘‘Gain­ing the ac­tive sup­port of New Zealand’s lead­ing in­sti­tute of tech­nol­ogy rep­re­sents a com­ing of age for our Rain­bow Com­mu­nity’s pre-em­i­nent cul­tural celebration,’’ she says.

In 2012, Unitec made a stand for diver­sity on cam­pus by im­ple­ment­ing the Ally Net­work Pro­gramme.

The ini­tia­tive aimed to cre­ate a more in­clu­sive work­ing and learn­ing en­vi­ron­ment by pro­mot­ing greater aware­ness of Les­bian, Gay, Bi­sex­ual, Trans­gen­der and In­ter­sex staff and stu­dents.

Unitec is the first New Zealand ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tion to im­ple­ment the pro­gramme.

Auck­land Pride Fes­ti­val runs Fe­bru­ary 7 un­til 23.

Photo: GRAHAME COX

Proud: Last year’s Auck­land Pride Fes­ti­val paved the way for the first gay pride pa­rade in more than a decade.

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