The Pride Flags You Didn't Know About

The Pride Flags You Didn't Know About

In June, people all over the world waved the Pride flag, a mix of colors and symbolism to represent the LGBTQ+ community. Corporations flew them proudly only to put them away as the month ended. But now that July has come, where are the Disability Pride flags? 

That's right - July is Disability Pride Month. It is a time to raise awareness and break the stigma of having a disability. The Disability community is vast, just like the LGBTQ+ one, so there are many groups of people to celebrate. And for those groups - yes, there are flags!

The flag with three equal horizontal stripes of gold, silver, and bronze is the Disability flag, which represents people with disabilities. The three colors are meant to evoke the medals one can win at the Paralympic Games. It was designed in 2017 by a Valencian dancer named Eros Recio, and it was presented to the United Nations for general use. 

In 2019, Ann Magill designed the Disability Pride Flag, seen above. The flag has zig-zag lines which symbolize the barriers that disabled people have to navigate. However, the bold colors and the zig-zag lines were updated in 2021 because they caused a strobe effect and was difficult to see for people with sight impairments. 

The updated flag utilizes the same features as before but with simpler geometry and muted colors. The diagonal bands means cutting across barriers and the parallel lines represent solidarity. The colors symbolize the following: 

  • Green: sensory disabilities
  • Blue: emotional and psychiatric disabilities
  • White: non-visible and undiagnosed disabilities
  • Gold: neurodiversity
  • Red: physical disabilities

The faded black background represents all the people who have died due to ableism, violence, negligence, illness, and eugenics, among others. It's also a symbol of rebellion. 

There are even flags for focused groups within the disability community including cerebral palsy, autism, and dyslexia. Flags provide the disability community with a means to gain visibility, celebrate their identity, and advocate for their rights. With these symbols, disability pride and accessibility wave for everyone. 

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