Joint Task Force North (JTFN) is showing solidarity with Yellowknife’s LGBTQ+ community by raising a pride flag outside its base this week.
Only a handful of other military bases around the country have done the same in recent years.
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CFB Edmonton became the first base in Canada to raise the flag in 2013. In the last week, 15 Wing Moose Jaw in Saskatchewan and CFB Borden in Ontario have both followed suit.
In Yellowknife, the gesture coincides with the city’s annual NWT Pride festival, which is now underway.
“The Canadian Armed Forces want to be inclusive and reflect Canadian society and we’re just trying to show our support in that endeavor,” said Captain (Navy) Steven Thornton, deputy commander of JTFN.
“Raising the flag just like Parliament did quite recently is a way to show that support.”
The decision to raise the flag outside JTFN was made after a member approached Brig.-Gen. Mike Nixon, the commander of JTFN, ahead of this year’s festival.
Thornton told Moose FM there wasn’t much to consider.
“For us it wasn’t about being part of an exclusive club or anything like that,” he said. “It was all about supporting our members and showing our inclusiveness.
“I think more [military bases] will follow suit. The core values of the Canadian Armed Forces are what we’re trying to reflect here.”
For a full schedule of NWT Pride events taking place this weekend, click here.