NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says he won’t be marching in the city’s St. Patrick’s Day parade.
De Blasio says he won’t partake in the parade along Fifth Avenue because of organizers’ refusal to allow participants to carry gay-pride signs.
“I will be participating in a number of other events to honor the Irish heritage of this city and the contributions of Irish Americans, but I simply disagree with the organizers of that parade in their exclusion of some individuals in this city,” he said.
Former mayor Michael Bloomberg always marched. De Blasio also did not march while public advocate.
Its organizers say gay people are welcome to march, but they say signs celebrating being gay would detract from the parade’s focus on honoring Irish heritage.
The mayor says he won’t heed activists’ call to ban city workers from marching while wearing their uniforms.
“I respect the right of our city workers to march in uniform, period,” de Blasio said.
The parade is a tradition that predates the city itself. Organizers predict more than 1 million people will attend on March 17.
Check Out These Other Stories From CBSNewYork.com:
- Talks Continue As NJ TRANSIT Strike Looms
- New SAT To Include Longer, More Difficult Reading Sections
- Brooklyn Lawyer Pleads Not Guilty To DWI, Other Charges In Fatal LIE Crash
- Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship’s Return To New Jersey Delayed
(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)