Pride flag goes up at Fresno State for Pride Month

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- June 1 marks the start of Pride Month and Fresno State is celebrating love by raising a pride flag for the second year in a row.

Estevan Parra is a staff member at Fresno State's LGBTQ+ Gender Programs.

He remembers being a student on campus back in 2008.

"I came out at the age of 26 and I am a Fresno State two-time alumni," he said. "I did my bachelors and masters. I feel like I am relieving my experience that I should have experienced 12 years ago when I came here as a freshman."

Estevan looks forward to seeing new students feel welcomed and supported when they see the flag.

This year, the flag is a little different. Instead of the traditionally known pride flag, Fresno State decided to put up the Progress flag, which is a little more inclusive.

"It represents a more holistic view of the LGBTQ+ community because it includes the trans flag colors and it includes black and brown to represent the contributions of people of color to the LGBTQ+ community," says Lexi Jenkins.

Jenkins is the LGBTQ+ Student Coordinator at the school's Cross Cultural Gender Center.

She says watching the Progress flag go up is inspiring.

In addition to the flag raising, this year, Fresno State will kick off its Gender Affirming care program -- a peer support resource for the LGBTQ+ community.

"It is life-saving," Jenkins said. "The suicide rates for trans and nonbinary youths are incredibly high compared to that of cisgender youth because they aren't offered the care that they need to be able to identify themselves fully."

Fresno State is also partnering with the community to host events through Pride Month.
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