LGBT+ traffic lights, Source: Alderman Kris Verbeeck on Facebook

Belgian town celebrates pride with LGBT+ traffic lights

Belgian town celebrates pride with LGBT+ traffic lights

Hemiksem wants to take a page out of London’s book

This week, local authorities in the Belgian town of Hemiksem decided to permanently redesign the traffic lights at one of the city’s crossroads, by adding LGBT+ symbols. The decision came this month as city officials agreed to dedicate the month of May to promoting tolerance towards people with diverse sexuality.

Additionally, the decision for the traffic lights was announced on 17 May, known as IDAHOT, the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. Although the city has yet to install the traffic lights, officials say this is not a temporary initiative – they should remain indefinitely.

Bringing a bit of London to small-town Belgium

The green sign on traffic lights at one intersection of the city will display the symbols for heterosexual, homosexual and lesbian relationships, as well as the transgender symbol. According to city officials, this should make everyone feel welcome.

The idea came from Alderman Kris Verbeeck, who was inspired by a similar installation at Trafalgar Square in London and decided to import it to his constituent town. He pointed out that the Belgian capital of Brussels had a similar initiative in the past, although the traffic lights would make the small town of Hemiksem stand out in the country.

Showing pride and acceptance

This month, local authorities in Hemiksem started promoting more tolerance towards the LGBT+ community throughout the city, because of Pride Month. According to Alderman Verbeeck, this is because everyone should feel welcome in the city.

Officials hung the rainbow flags at various locations across the city, including roads, the main square and the local abbey. Authorities have also asked local sports associations to feature the rainbow flag and state their support for the LGBT+ community.



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