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Published on July 10, 2024
Ramsey County Proclaims July 2024 as Disability Pride Month to Celebrate Diversity and RightsSource: Google Street View

Ramsey County, a community where nearly a quarter of its population lives with a disability, is leading the charge in recognizing the value and pride of this diverse group by officially declaring July 2024 as Disability Pride Month. The announcement came from the board of commissioners, drawing attention not just to the existence of people with disabilities, but also to their integral role in the vibrant fabric of local society.

As Ramsey County's official statement highlighted, Disability Pride Month is observed in July to commemorate the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26, 1990. An acknowledgment, that diversity includes a myriad of intersectional identities — ones that cannot, and should not, be overlooked or marginalized. "People with disabilities should not be seen as existing “without” but rather as individuals who enriches the many diverse Ramsey County communities," the county's proclamation earnestly reads.

Disability Pride Month serves as an impetus for people with disabilities to take pride in their unique differences and to insist on their right to fully participate in society. It's a month-long celebration not just of the passage of the ADA, which banned discrimination against people with disabilities, but also of the continued activism and advocacy to maintain and extend those rights.

Residents of Ramsey County living with disabilities, and their allies, are encouraged to take part in this month's celebrations. There's a palpable feeling of empowerment as the community rallies around the idea that disability is not a defect or a deficiency, but a part of the human continuum to be celebrated. "The County recognizes that Disability Pride Month is a time for people with disabilities to unapologetically celebrate their bodies as they are," the proclamation stated, casting a spotlight on an often overlooked celebration of diversity.

Events and activities throughout the month aim to foster understanding, acceptance, and ultimately, pride. Ramsey County's own declaration is a call to action: for residents to recognize and respect the experiences of people with disabilities, to challenge ableist attitudes, and to push for inclusivity and accessibility in all aspects of communal life.