Diversity & Equity Newsletter

July 2022

Big picture

July is Disability Pride Month

July was chosen as Disability Pride Month to align with the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Understanding Disability Pride Month is nuanced, as the concept of Disability Pride means different things to different people. For some Disabled people, it means accepting yourself for who you are. For others, it means celebrating how far we as a community have come. For others still, Disability Pride means viewing disability as a natural and beautiful part of human diversity and celebrating our disabilities that make each community member unique.

Having a strong sense of pride in your identity as a disabled person has been shown to grow self-esteem and make it easier to navigate and subvert the stigma surrounding being disabled. Engaging in a community of people who are also proud of their disabled identity helps each person to cope, as well as strengthens the community. A strong community makes it easier to push for better services, more accessibility, and take care of one another.

Disability Pride Month is officially recognized by a few states and cities, but not nationally (yet.) As the Disability Rights Movement continues, hopefully, we will see more official recognition for the month-long celebration.

Take some time this month to find disability pride organizations around you, and maybe attend some events celebrating disability and the impact disabled people have on their community! Check out some links that are shared below for more information about Disability Pride.

The Meaning of the Disability Pride Flag

In October 2021, Ann Magill and other members of the disability community redesigned the Disability Pride Flag. The previous design has bright colors and a lightning bolt, which could cause seizures if you scrolled past it too quickly. The new flag uses muted colors and straight lines for more accessibility for people with light sensitivity or who may have seizures.

Each part of the flag has a meaning, intended to celebrate the history and diversity of the disability community. Those meanings are:

  • The Black Field: A color of mourning and rage; for those who are victims of Ableist violence, and also rebellion and protest
  • The Five Colors: The variety of needs and experiences of the Disability Community (Invisible and undiagnosed disabilities, physical disabilities, neurodivergence, psychiatric disabilities, sensory disabilities)
  • The Parallel Stripes: Solidarity within the Disability Community and all its differences
  • The Diagonal Band: “Cutting across” barriers that separate disabled people; creativity and light cutting through the darkness

Click here for more information about the new Disability Pride Flag.

Disability Independence Day

On July 26, 1990, following years of demonstrations and protests from the Disabled Community, the Americans With Disabilities Act was signed into law. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provides protection from employment discrimination as well as better access to goods, services, and communications for people with disabilities. It is often viewed as the civil rights bill for disabled people.

This year marks the 32nd anniversary of the signing of the ADA. Many disability organizations are holding events to celebrate the ADA, our accomplishments as a community, and look towards the future and what changes still need to be made for the disability community to have true equity and liberation in our society.

Book Suggestion - "All The Way to the Top"

"All the Way to the Top - How One Girl’s Fight for Americans with Disabilities Changed Everything" by Annette Bay Pimentel and Jennifer Keelan-Chaffins follows the story of Keelan-Chaffin's own childhood, leading to her participation in the Capitol Crawl at age 8. Keelan-Chaffins was born with Cerebral Palsy and is a wheelchair user. She found that while her wheelchair gave her freedom and independence, society's lack of accessibility often stopped her from doing what other kids her age were doing. This book does a wonderful job of teaching children that you can make change in the world, no matter your age or ability, while teaching about the event that turned the tide for the ADA to pass.
Big picture

Interviews & Articles

Ev's interview for NBOA's Net Assets Magazine has been published virtually for free! Ev and other Business Officers shared their experiences being LGBTQIA+ in a school business office. Their portion of the article is titled "A Waterfall Effect."

Click here to access the article.

Big picture
Big picture

2022 Disability Unite Festival

Sunday, July 17th, 12pm

West 72nd Street

New York, NY


The Disability Unite Festival returns, and for the first time ever will be a virtual AND in-person celebration! All are invited to join this FREE, non-ticketed event starring incredible music and arts performances.

This year’s theme is “A Future Of Inclusion”. As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, our world is undergoing fundamental restructuring. “A Future Of Inclusion” envisions humanity entering a world where inclusion is embraced on every level, and highlights that the time is now to build a future where we can live the life we want.

For more information or to sign up, click here!

On The Spectrum Series - Panel Interest Surveys

The Diversity and Equity Committee will be hosting panel-style workshops featuring adults on the autism spectrum. Please fill out this form so we can see what topics and questions you might like to have covered during these sessions.

Diversity Terminology & Language Glossary

Check out the Diversity Terminology & Language Glossary for current terms and language used to talk about diversity topics. This document will be frequently updated to keep on top of the ever-changing conversations about language usage.

Diversity & Equity Suggestion Box

Do you have a topic or issue for the Diversity & Equity Committee to discuss? Have you found a resource, tool, etc you think would be beneficial to our goals? Do you have any questions or suggestions? This form is anonymous.

Big picture