| 4.3°C Dublin

Gays can boost our economy, says councillor

A COUNCIL is to make a bid to host some of this year's Dublin Pride festival events in a move that could provide an economic boost for the area.

South Dublin County Council is to contact the organisers to offer support and assistance, and to invite the festival to hold some events in the area this year and in the future.

Cllr Dermot Looney (Lab) tabled a motion on the issue at the council's monthly meeting. He said the council should congratulate Dublin Pride for raising awareness of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights in the capital for more than 25 years. "I am asking the council to contact the group with a view to bringing some of the events to our county," he said, pointing out the "economic benefits" it would have.

"It would be fantastic to see our council facilities being used for the festival," he added. "We do have a vibrant population in the community and I think it is vital to support that population through this."

A council spokesman said the local authority's social inclusion officer had already made contact with the chair of Dublin Pride.

Pamela Kearns (Lab) said: "It's important that children, as early as possible, are made aware of lesbians and gays because they are part of the community -- they are not alien species, they are our friends and neighbours, our brothers and sisters."