She said police and event organizers were working side by side to conduct visual inspections of each float to ensure participants met required legal standards and the expectations of Mardi Gras organizers.
“If these standards are not met, the participants will have the opportunity to correct the problem before the start of the parade,” she said.
The Mardi Gras spokesperson said there have been no infringement notices in the past five years: “Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras sees these as positive outcomes for our LGBTQIA+ communities.”
The Mardi Gras Police Agreement was signed in 2014 after the violent arrest of a Sydney teenager during the 2013 parade led to claims of police brutality.
The deal is currently under review, but the spokesperson said it was intended to ensure the police operation during Mardi Gras is “aligned with the needs of the community” and to ensure that people feel safe, protected and fair and just. feel treated.
In contrast, Melbourne’s Midsumma Festival Chief executive Karen Bryant said Victorian Police do not conduct decency checks on participants “and Midsumma would not agree to them doing so”.
A Pride in Protest spokesperson said decency checks should not be allowed and that police pass judgment on someone’s appearance or clothing as an act of harassment.
“The gay community has often blurred the social boundaries of acceptability and the state making arbitrary statements should be considered a violation of that community,” the spokesperson said.
The brawl over decency checks comes after Sydney Mayor Clover Moore warned police she didn’t want visitors to face armed officers and drug dogs at next year’s WorldPride festival amid concerns over “heavy policing” in the LGBTQ district of the city.
Pride in Protest has long condemned the police presence at the parade, calling for a review of Mardi Gras’s relationship with corporate sponsors such as Qantas and ANZ, a ban on the use of sniffer dogs and an end to the mandatory detention of asylum seekers.
The Pride in Protest spokesperson said that Mardi Gras submitting to the will of the police and actively collaborating with them is a betrayal of what the Pride movement has historically stood for. “The police, their guns and their dogs should not be promoted by our events, or given additional power over our community by a board that claims to represent us all.”
NSW Greens spokesperson for sex, sexuality and gender identity Jenny Leong said there was no place for heavy-handed policing on Mardi Gras.
Leong said LGBTQI+ communities are routinely subjected to “disproportionate scrutiny and oversight”.
“There is a clear link between the gender-based inequalities that we see in our society and attempts to control people’s bodies and cut off people’s freedom of expression, including controlling what they wear,” he said. they.
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