“We will roll and ride and walk together for a more just New York City,” said New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio at the start of the city’s first annual Disability Pride Parade on July 12, 2015.
Standing with thousands of individuals and organizations, members of Actors’ Equity Association marched down Broadway from Madison Square Park to Union Square in honor of the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“As a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association, I was very excited to learn that Equity was participating in New York City's first ever Disability Pride Parade. I was born with Spina Bifida, the most common permanently disabling birth defect, but probably the least well known. Spina Bifida literally means ‘split spine,’” said Mary Donnelly. “It was important for me to walk in the parade to bring visibility and awareness to Spina Bifida, as well as to celebrate the rights afforded to us by the Act. I am proud of Equity for taking a prominent role in this historical event.”
The inaugural parade, which hosted more than 3,000 marchers, marks Mayor de Blasio’s declaration of July as NYC’s Disability Pride Month.
“I marched because I am disabled. I marched to support people who cannot improve their conditions. I marched because I found out that even with the ADA, life as a disabled person is very difficult,” said member Diane Anastasio. “I marched because we still have a long way to go. I marched because we have come so far. I marched because I am grateful I can; I marched because I am determined to work to build on what the ADA has accomplished.”
Members proudly march in New York City’s first annual Disability Pride Parade on July 12, 2015.