The event was organised by a group of Victoria University students who chose Spirit Day to make their voices heard. “[W]hile the event is original [sic] about the bullying faced by American LGBT students, we feel that it can easily become so much more,” the group’s website says.
Organisers expected hundreds more to join the march than actually did, with over 700 confirming they’d attend on Facebook, but the 100 or so that turned up made up for the lack of people power with loud chanting and bright rainbow flags.
The group anticipated on their Facebook page that some would not be able to make it because of the timing of the event. “If their [sic] is any way you can take the day off, expand your lunch break, pull a sicky, please come, of course don’t get into trouble.”
Parliament dissolved this morning, with the march arriving two hours later. Lesbian Labour MP Maryan Street was still around to meet the group when they arrived, but other gay MPs couldn’t make it, including Green MP Kevin Hague who was out of town.
LegaliseLove president Joseph Habgood says many Kiwis are unaware gay marriage is not legal. “The biggest response we’ve had so far is not against gay marriage, it is utter shock that we don’t already have it.”
The march did not seem to have any immediate effect on the government, with Prime Minister John Key saying that there are much more important issues to deal with this election.