IM this article to a friend!

July 2, 2004

First International Disability Pride Parade: Chicago, July 18

From: PR Newswire (press release) - Jul 2, 2004

CHICAGO, July 2 /PRNewswire/ -- How do you define "disability?" Some of those who see it as a natural part of human diversity, will be taking to the streets of Chicago this summer to drive home their point.

Step off for the first International Disability Pride Parade is noon, Sunday, July 18. Disabled peoples, their floats, their cars, their wheelchairs, their service dogs, and their friends will march, roll, and dance down Solidarity Drive near the Field Museum, turn onto Museum Drive, and end up at Soldier Field Green for a post-parade rally and celebration from 1-4.

As messages of support roll in from as far away as Norway and Nepal, Parade Planning Co-Chair Sarah Triano notes, "It's time we reclaim the definition of Disability and take control over the naming of our own experience. I define Disability as a natural and beautiful part of human diversity. I believe the barrier to be overcome is not my Disability; it is societal oppression and discrimination based on biological differences . . . All disabled people must go out into the world with heads held high, dignity and pride intact, and vowing to take back the definition of Disability with militant self-pride."

Pride Parade Grand Marshal will be Yoshiko Dart, the disability rights activist who, along with her husband, the late Justin Dart, played a key role in the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Scheduled rally speakers and performers include:

-- Judy Heumann, co-founder of the World Institute on Disability and former Assistant Secretary for the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services , U.S. Department of Education;

-- Grace Lee Boggs, longtime human rights activist and writer;

-- Violinist Nura Aly;

-- Jesse Spalding High School Marching Band;

-- Peter Cook, renowned Deaf poet and creator of The Flying Words Project;

-- Alana Wallace, wheelchair dancer;

-- Rap artists DeVoy Boyd and Unexpected; and others.

Co-sponsors include: Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago; the American Heart Association; Chicago Public Schools, Office of Specialized Services; Edmonds Institute; World Institute on Disability/Proyecto Vision; National Organization for Women, Chicago Chapter; Progress Center for Independent Living; Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago; Mouth Magazine; Chicago ADAPT; Boggs Center to Nurture Community Leadership; Kids As Self-Advocates, Family Voices; the Illinois Office of Rehabilitation Services; Gray Panthers of Metro Detroit; National Disabled Students Union; Open Doors, Inc.; Not Dead Yet; Forest Park Chapter of the Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities of Illinois; United Cerebral Palsy Detroit; National Conference for Community and Justice Detroit; American Association of People with Disabilities; University of Illinois at Chicago Disabled Students Union; and the University of Florida Union of Students with Disabilities.

More information at our website:

Sarah Triano, 773-263-6378
Janice Stockwell, 312-253-7000 ext. 107

SOURCE First International Disability Pride Parade
Web Site:

Copyright © 1996-2004 PR Newswire Association LLC. All Rights Reserved.