Tuesday, June 1, 2021

World’s First "Progress Pride" Public Bus Debuts In Palm Beach County


 In honor of LGBTQ+ Pride month, Palm Tran, the public transit system serving Palm Beach County, has rolled out its “Ride with Pride” bus.

Throughout the month of June, the “Ride with “Pride” bus will operate daily along Palm Tran’s Route 1. With close to 200 stops, Route 1 is Palm Tran’s longest and most visible route, running from Palm Beach Gardens to Boca Raton, in great part along U.S. Highway 1.
Photo courtesy of Palm Tran
While buses decorated in the colors of the iconic Rainbow Pride Flag have operated around the world for more than a dozen years, this year, Palm Tran’s “Ride with “Pride” bus and Pinelllas Suncoast Transit Authoritiey's “Ride with “Pride” bus, are the world’s first public buses to be fully wrapped with the eleven colors of the Progress Pride Flag.

Representing represent people of color, trans and non-binary individuals, and those living with HIV/AIDS, black, brown, light blue, pink, and white stripes are incorporated into the Progress Pride Flag, along with the six colors of the iconic Rainbow Flag.

“I am extremely proud of the talented and diverse employees we have at Palm Tran," said Clinton B. Forbes, Palm Tran's Executive Director. "This bus further highlights our long-standing commitment to equality for everyone."

The "Ride with Pride" bus is a Palm Tran partnership with two local LGBTQ organizations – Compass and the Palm Beach County Human Rights Council (PBCHRC).
Compass is one of the largest LGBTQ community centers in Florida. Its mission is to engage, empower and enrich the lives of LGBTQ people and those impacted by HIV and AIDS. 

“Palm Beach County is a beacon for the LGBTQ community,” said Compass Executive Director Julie Seaver. “Palm Tran’s celebration of our vibrant, colorful, and diverse community is both endearing and empowering.”
PBCHRC is Florida’s oldest, independent, non-partisan, political organization dedicated to ending discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. The organization promotes equality through education, advocacy, direct action, impact litigation, and community outreach. 
“Palm Tran has long been a leader in providing LGBTQ employees with equal protections, rights and benefits,” said PBCHRC President and Founder Rand Hoch. “The ‘Ride with Pride’ bus lets everyone know Palm Trans commitment to diversity extends to the entire LGBTQ community.”

"Over the past several decades, the LGBTQ community in Palm Beach County has gone from being nearly invisible, to being tolerated, to being acknowledged, to being granted equal rights and benefits, to having our families recognized, and now, to having the diversity of the LGBTQ community publicly celebrated," said Hoch.. "That is quite an achievement."
The "Ride with Pride" bus will debut at the Palm Beach Pride Market on June 5, 2021, from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Bryant Park in Lake Worth Beach.

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