Helsinki declares Pride Peace

The largest human rights and cultural event in Finland, Helsinki Pride, culminates in Helsinki Pride Week celebrated this week. The Mayors of the City of Helsinki serve as the patrons of the event. For the first time, the City declared Pride Peace.
Pride-flags in front of the City hall.
During Pride Week, the City of Helsinki flies the flag at City Hall and numerous other locations. Photo: Veeti Hautanen

To kick off Helsinki Pride Week, Pride Peace was declared throughout the city. Pride Peace, inspired by the Christmas Peace declaration in Turku, was declared at Helsinki City Hall by Mayor Juhana Vartiainen and chair of the board of the Helsinki Pride Community Senni Moilanen. This is the first time that Pride Peace has been declared in Helsinki.

“By declaring Pride Peace, we want to underscore the fact that our city belongs to everyone – you can walk on the streets of Helsinki in peace as you are. This city has always been diverse, and diversity has made us strong. Pride Peace is not only intended for this week, but all weeks of the year,” says Mayor Vartiainen. 

Senni Moilanen ja Juhana Vartiainen.
Senni Moilanen, chair of the Helsinki Pride Community (left) and Juhana Vartiainen, Mayor of Helsinki, declared Pride Peace together. Photo: Veeti Hautanen

Themes of peace and hope 

This year, the Helsinki Pride event is focused on furthering the messages of peace and hope. We want to foster peace in society, but also to require and make sure that everyone has the right to body peace, peace of mind and peace to live and grow into the person they are. We want to build hope in a time where you may often feel unsafe and unsure about the future ahead.

“In conflict situations, minorities often become even more vulnerable than before, and it is up to us all to ensure that this does not happen. Through the event, the Helsinki Pride Community is trying to highlight the importance of ensuring that we defend the rights of minorities together. We exist so that no one is left alone,” says Senni Moilanen, chair of the Helsinki Pride Community.

Pride Parade 2023.
An estimated 80,000 people joined the Pride Parade in 2023. Photo: Mika Ruusunen

Workshops, exhibitions and lots of other events 

More than 200 different events are available to the public during Pride Week. The City of Helsinki organises events promoting equality in libraries, in cultural centres, at the City Museum and in sports and youth services. Libraries highlight rainbow literature and hold various rainbow-themed workshops. Youth Pride House offers discussion and many different things to do. Cultural centres offer e.g. theatre, music and crafts. During Pride Week, Helsinki City Museum will offer rainbow history walking tours.

In the City Hall lobby (Pohjoisesplanadi 11–13), you can visit the Queer + Elders and Pioneers exhibition by the international Rainbow Cities network. Chair of the rainbow association for seniors Sateenkaariseniorit Risto Hartikainen and chair of the Helsinki Pride Community Senni Moilanen talk about pioneer work for the Finnish rainbow community in the Art, Stories and Tapas event on Wednesday 26 June at 17–18.30. The event is open to everyone and features music and snacks.

Pride Week culminates in the Pride Parade and Pride Park Fest on Saturday 29 June. Management and staff from the City of Helsinki will participate in the parade both on top of a lorry and on foot. A DJ will help people march to the beat. More than 80,000 people joined the parade last year. The City of Helsinki will host a children's area in the Pride Park Fest, where children can visit a library bus, have water tattoos made and participate in story hour.

The Helsinki Pride Community is a non-governmental association and expert organisation whose aim is to eliminate inequalities in culture, language and society's structures, values and standards. The association carries out community, social and youth work throughout the year and organises the Helsinki Pride event annually.

The City of Helsinki is committed to promoting equality, non-discrimination and human rights in all its operations. The City of Helsinki will continue as Helsinki Pride’s main partner. Cooperation with Pride is part of the City's strong commitment to equality and non-discrimination. The City’s objective is to make Helsinki a good and safe city to live and be for all residents regardless of background or personal characteristics.