Prime Minister Antti Rinne (SDP) is set to make history this weekend when he becomes the first Finnish PM to march in a Pride parade.
“When we boldly defend the indivisible dignity of every human being, the world becomes a more just place for all of us human” Rinne says in a release, confirming his attendance.
This year’s parade marks the highlight of Pride Week, and sees marchers go from Senate Square to Kaivopuisto on Saturday afternoon.
In a statement, Prime Minister Rinne says that he’s from the age group that had criminal and legal discrimination against sexual minorities, but that now he sees the world changing for the better.
“In 2019 it seems completely incomprehensible that in 1971 homosexuality was a crime, that in 1981 it was considered a disease and that only in 1995 was it prohibited to discriminate on grounds of sexual orientation” says the Prime Minister, noting how strange that sentence must seem to Finns in their 20s, who grew up in a more equal time.
“The world does not change by itself, but bold people are needed to change it” adds Rinne.
Pride Week in Helsinki is the country’s biggest celebration of LGBTQI+ culture and rights with more than 100 events taking place across the capital including special events for young people.