Auckland, February 12, 2018
Mr Gay New Zealand has been announced for 2018, but despite the new title, he says he wants the word ‘Gay’ to disappear.
Blenheim personal trainer and life coach Rickey Devine-White was this year’s Mr Gay NZ winner.
Big Gay Out was cancelled on Sunday due to the rain, but festival-goers did not let that dampen their spirits.
They took the announcement of Mr Gay New Zealand to Karangahape Rd Bar Caluzzi and this year’s winner was announced as Blenheim’s Ricky Devine White.
Ahead of Australia
While he said New Zealand is far further ahead than Australia in terms of equal rights, he still has goals he hopes to see achieved.
“In 20 years, I want New Zealand to not actually have the word ‘gay’ so that it becomes a normal society where there is no ‘gay,’ there is no ‘bisexual’ and ‘transgender.’ We are all just one people,” Mr White told ‘The AM Show.’
That has been his goal over the past few years to give back to the community.
Criteria for Honour
“Mr Gay New Zealand is based on your contribution to the wider LGBTI community, things you have done in the past, and things you plan to do in the future as well.
“My day-to-day job is a personal trainer and life coach. I work with 20 children and mentor them. We run charity events and set up for cancer society events, and we also run a big diversity day,” Mr White said.
Easy in Navy
He said that he came out at age 21 while on deployment with the Royal New Zealand Navy.
“I came out while I was on ship. I was in a very small place sharing a room with 16 other guys.
The Navy was a place where there is so much comradeship and so much support Some of the older sailors definitely had a lot of questions: ‘What does it mean to be gay?’ ‘Have you been gay all the time?’ ‘Is it a decision?’ However, I never faced any animosity from my fellow sailors. The New Zealand Navy is really accepting,” he said.
Newshub reported the following on Sunday:
Rain puts off the Event
The annual Pride festival event ‘Big Gay Out’ has been cancelled, due to Sunday’s weather.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the cancellation via Facebook.
“We were all ready to go for the Big Gay Out, but sadly, it has just been cancelled due to all this rain,” she wrote.
“Huge thanks to all the organisers who put so much effort in and to our team of volunteers too. See you at the Pride Parade!! #RelentlesslyProud.”
Festival organisers confirmed the cancellation.
Big Gay Out Executive Director Jason Myers said that due to health and safety reasons, it was not safe to go ahead with the event in the wet weather.
He said that because of the scale of the event, there is no rain date.
“The event has been cancelled for this year. We were looking forward to seeing the Prime Minister today, but we will look forward to having her extra bundle next year. The event was planned to take place at Auckland’s Coyle Park in Pt Chevalier,” Mr Myers said.
The above Reports and picture have been published through a Special Arrangement with www.rnz.co.nz
Rickey Devine-White appearing at the ‘AM Show’ this morning.
Image Credit: The ‘AM Show’ through Newshub.