Rainbow crosswalk officially unveiled at Langford school after vandalism incidents

Rainbow crosswalk officially unveiled at Langford school after vandalism incidents
The rainbow crosswalk at Spencer Middle School is shown.

A crowd gathered outside Spencer Middle School in Langford on Thursday to celebrate the grand opening of the school’s Pride crosswalk.

Speaking at the grand opening ceremony Thursday, Grade 8 Spencer Middle School student Georgia Banner said she hoped the crosswalk would make all students feel welcome, both at the school and beyond.

“Youth want to be liked by others but don’t always show who they are,” she said.

“The Pride Progress crosswalk is a symbol and statement of being free to be who you are, and don’t be who you’re not,” she added.

The crosswalk was an initiative brought forward by the middle school’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identities (SOGI) Club.

It was the students themselves that reached out to the City of Langford to get the crosswalk made, according to the school’s principal.

On Thursday, Langford Mayor Scott Goodmanson said he was grateful for the leadership and passion that the students showed through the process.

“This crosswalk acts as a visual representation of the city’s support and commitment to equity for all residents,” he said.

The rainbow crosswalk was first painted on Feb. 13 and was vandalized twice within a day.

Just hours after it was initially painted, it was vandalized, but city crews were able to repair it. Then, later that same evening, the crosswalk was vandalized a second time, with tire marks and spray paint visible on the rainbow crosswalk.

READ MORE: ‘Disturbed and saddened’: New rainbow crosswalk in Langford vandalized twice in 24 hours

Banner says that when the crosswalk was vandalized earlier this month she was “angry and upset,” but also felt supported by the community afterwards, particularly by other students from Millstream Elementary who drew rainbow crosswalks in chalk and sent letters to the middle school.

“I hope this crosswalk makes you want to be who you are, and not what other people want you to be,” said Banner.

Adam ChanAdam Chan

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