MERRITT — A pair of Merritt business owners are doing what they can to promote diversity in their city.
Kerstin and Roland Auer have created 1,000 rainbow stickers in support of the LGBTQ community in town.
It follows council's recent decision to deny School District 58's request for a rainbow crosswalk downtown. A group of LGBTQ students at Merritt Secondary School was seeking city approval for the crosswalk which they hoped to paint — at their own cost — on Coldwater Avenue.
Kerstin Auer says she was shocked by council's decision.
"I really thought it was a no-brainer. The City of Merritt has it in their charter... that everyone is welcome here and that we welcome diversity and nobody is being discriminated against based on anything."
She says the decision prompted the pair to create the stickers to show Merritt is welcoming and diverse. Kerstin says roughly half of the stickers have been handed out either at Brambles Bakery or via their Facebook page.
Does Auer feel council's decision is reflective of the community as a whole?
"Not really actually. There's always gonna be people who are not supportive of the pride organization but I really do feel that Merritt is a very open and supportive community," she says.
"Just the response I've gotten with posts on my Facebook page and with people coming to my house to pick up those stickers shows me there's a lot of support."
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