THE Union Jack flying over Redditch Town Hall has been lowered to half mast following the gay night club massacre in Orlando, Florida last week.
The council has also joined local authorities across the country by flying the Rainbow Flag of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans community at half mast in solidarity with those who died in the incident, the worst slaughter of its kind on American soil.
The borough’s Mayor, Councillor Joe Baker said: “I was horrified and dismayed to see what had happened in Orlando. Being part of the gay community you learn to go to places where you know you will be safe, and to see that number of people being murdered was horrific and devastating.
“Our thoughts are with the victims and their families and the LGBT community as well.
“We are fortunate that Redditch has a proud history of of being LGBT friendly, but events in America bring home to you that we live in a world where hatred, bigotry and homophobia still exist.”
Council Leader Coun Bill Hartnett (Lab, Church Hill) said: “Members of the LGBT community approached the Mayor over this and we thought it was appropriate that we lower the flag to half mast as we did following the tragic killings in Belgium and France, and fly the Rainbow Flag as a mark of respect and solidarity to show we will not be cowed by acts of terror.”
Redditch joined local authorities from Newcastle to Manchester and beyond in flying their flags at half mast following the massacre.