Organizers of the Prague Pride Festival will obtain a grant of CZK 650,000 from the capital, Pražský Patriot reports.
Proposed by Zdeněk Hřib (Pirates), mayor of the city, the grant was approved by Prague representatives at a Thursday meeting.
The prospect of supporting the festival was discussed in March, but representatives did not decide on the matter back then.
„The grant is not intended for the source itself, but for a weekly educational program. From my point of view of the price-performance ratio, this is a matter that will definitely pay off for the city. This is an event that will attract a lot of tourists to Prague, so I daresay that it deserves support,” Hřib said.
Mayor added that the grant commission had endorsed the support for the Prague Pride Festival as well. The city allocated money for the event as a part of the distribution of grants intended for tourism.
According to Hřib, tens of thousands of people come to Prague for the occasion. “Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, we will need every single tourist this year,” he said.
Data available on an official website of the festival show that 92,000 people attended the event in 2019, only 62% of whom resided in Prague.
The grant was criticized by the coalition representative Jan Wolf (KDU-ČSL). He was dissatisfied with the fact it was once again a subject of discussion despite not being approved in March.
„It is April, we had this event here in March, we put it to a vote, and it didn’t pass. If it doesn’t pass today, we will vote on it in May. If it doesn’t pass then, we will vote on it in June…“ he said.
Opposition representative Ondřej Prokop (ANO) said that Prague should provide the event with a symbolic sum of money. He called the proposed sum too high and claimed that the city should use the money in a different field. Prokop proposed to reduce the amount to 250,000 crowns during the discussion.
The amount was also criticized by another opposition representative, Martin Sedeke (ODS), who also proposed a reduction. Eva Horáková, representative of Pirates, responded by saying the event would help young people in the search for sexual identity.
The rainbow flag was first raised on Prague City Hall building by mayor Hřib in 2019. The first Czech festival of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals (LGBT) was held in Prague in 2010.