Rainbow crosswalk dedicated in Cooper-Young

Updated: Nov. 3, 2019 at 4:22 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The Bluff City is now home to the first rainbow crosswalk in the state of Tennessee.

A crowd gathered at the intersection of Cooper and Young on Sunday afternoon for the official dedication of the crosswalk.

Jerred Price, a former city council candidate, led the effort to bring a rainbow crosswalk to Memphis, specifically to the Cooper-Young neighborhood.

"Cooper-Young has the highest concentration of identifying same sex households in the southeast United States, so I thought it was time to recognize that and the community and our LGBTQ community here in Memphis," said Price. "There's no reason why Memphis, as it's turning 200 years old, can't embrace equality and inclusion."

Price's petition garnered more than 1,100 signatures online.

Residents, business owners and organizations like the Cooper Young Community Association stepped up to offer support.

Though city officials had to sign off on the project, it was paid for with private donations.

While many support the idea, some on social media question why it's even necessary.

But Price pays more attention to the positive.

"There are going to be a few people who are going to be negative, but you know what? We're going to go and we're going to keep pushing and we're going to keep loving," said Price. "It's time that people start embracing diversity and equality for everyone."

Right now, only one crosswalk at the Cooper and Young intersection is painted.

Price said plans are in the works to raise money to paint the other three crosswalks.

Other cities with rainbow crosswalks include Atlanta, Seattle and Chicago.

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