On Saturday, February 9th Max Francis and other members of the True Hamiltonian team attended McMaster's first Pride Night, which featured McMaster's men's and women's volleyball teams hitting the court. The women's team got the game festivities started at 1 p.m., followed by a men's game at 3 p.m.
The event was the result of a partnership between the McMaster Equity and Inclusion Office, the McMaster Students Union (MSU) Pride Community Centre and RBC. RBC handed out company Pride bracelets to the first 500 fans. RBC also bought 300 True Hamiltonian Pride T-shirts, which were given to the first 300 fans to arrive.
The day was about much more than volleyball, kicking off with an 11 a.m. RBC panel discussion on creating inclusive environments for LGBTQ+ youth. The McMaster Athletics and Recreation Department also created and shared a "You Can Play" video before the volleyball games, emphasizing that athletes of all sexualities and gender identities should feel safe and respected.
The MSU Pride Centre offers educational programming and peer support for LGTBQ+ students. The centre also features the only LGBTQ+ library in the Hamilton area; the library offers LGBTQ+ content but also allows students to connect to LGBTQ+ services and organizations across Canada.
True Hamiltonian has always embraced Hamilton's diversity, understanding that anyone can grow to call the city home. Our "Hamilton is Home" shirts come in a variety of languages, symbolizing that there isn't one true definition of what it means to be a Hamiltonian. We also like to practice what our shirts preach, and hope to be at McMaster's next Pride event to show our support.
We hope to see you there as well.