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July 13, 2015updated 23 Mar 2023 12:23pm

New York City holds its first Disability Pride Parade

By City Monitor Staff

In July 1990, the United States Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The law, for which campaigners had been fighting for over four years, prohibits discrimination based on disability, in a similar manner to earlier civil rights laws. It also requires employers and those who run public buildings to take reasonable steps to accommodate the needs of disabled people.

Over the weekend, New York City celebrated the 25th anniversary of the law by holding the city’s first Disability Pride parade. Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke; while the event’s grand marshal was the former Democratic senator Tom Harkin, who had introduced the ADA, and made part of his speech in sign language so that his deaf brother could understand.

More than 3,000 people marched in the parade – some on foot, some in wheelchairs, some using guide dogs, some using walking frames.


The marchers had a pretty clear message:

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Though some were more militant than others:


The Little People of America, a non-profit whose membership is limited to those shorter than 4’10”, were also in attendance:


Seems like a good time was had by all.


Read more on accessibility in cities:

This is what the Paris Metro map looks like if you’re in a wheelchair:

The most and least wheelchair accessibile cities: a quadriplegic’s guide

All images: Stephanie Keith/Getty.


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