The Caribbean Equality Project participated in the 35th annual Phagwah Parade in Queens on March 26 alongside government officials and members of the Phagwah Social Justice Collective contingent.
Holi, which is also known as the Hindu Festival of Colors, ushered in the spring season with a colorful display of community and joy in the Little Guyana section of Richmond Hill, Queens.
The Phagwah Social Justice Collective contingent, founded by Caribbean Equality Project in 2019 with the intention of fostering a progressive shift in the cultural landscape of South Queens’ Indo-Caribbean and South Asian community, marched to advocate for an “equitable Caribbean enclave inclusive of LGBTQ+ and women’s rights, immigrant justice, the ending of gender-based violence, trans justice, and to raise awareness of hate crimes and housing discrimination within the Indo-Caribbean and South Asian communities,” according to the Caribbean Equality Project.
Mohamed Q. Amin, the executive director of the Caribbean Equality Project, noted that the event was particularly important in light of the widespread legislative attacks on transgender and non-binary individuals as well as the broader LGBTQ community.
“In the face of unprecedented anti-trans bill, attacks on reproductive rights, and criminalization of drag, the Phagwah Social Justice Collective contingent demonstrated the power of advocacy, visibility, community organizing, and solidarity!” Amin said.
The Phagwah Social Justice Collective members include the Caribbean Equality Project; Chhaya Community Development Corporation; Jahajee Sisters: Empowering Indo-Caribbean Women; Sadhana: Coalition of Progressive Hindus, and South Queens Women’s March — all South Queens-based community organizations. The collective is supported by the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs and the City Commission on Human Rights.
Among those who joined the group at the parade included Manuel Castro, who serves as the commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, and out queer District Leader Ramdat Singh.
See some photos below: