New York's Staten Island to hold alternate LGBTQ+ inclusive St Patrick’s Day parade

After facing years of rejection, LGBTQ+ communities and Pride groups in Staten Island will participate in the new St Patrick’s Day parade on March 17.

Photo of people in Staten Island marching in a parade, New York's Staten Island will host their first-ever LGBTQ-inclusive St Patrick’s Day parade this year.
Image: X @spiceguns

After years of controversy, New York’s Staten Island borough will host its first-ever LGBTQ+-inclusive St Patrick’s Day parade on Sunday, March 17.

The ban on LGBTQ+ participation in New York City’s Manhattan St Patrick’s Day parade was lifted in 2014. However, Staten Island still refused to allow queer groups to take part in its parade, citing teachings from the Catholic church and claiming that LGBTQ+ folk do not belong at an event celebrating a saint.

Staten Island is known for being the most conservative borough in New York. Parade lead organiser Larry Cummings, previously said: “Our parade is for Irish heritage and culture. It is not a political or sexual identification parade.” He later clarified: “Gays can march, but not under a banner.”

Staten Island is believed to be the only ​​location that still bans LGBTQ+ groups from participating in its St Patrick’s Day parade. Many residents, businesses, and elected officials, including New York City Mayor Eric Adams, have previously boycotted the event over its exclusion of LGBTQ+ groups.

On Thursday, February 22, Adams announced that the borough will now offer two St Patrick’s Day parades on separate dates. The existing parade will be held on Sunday, March 3, and the new, LGBTQ+-inclusive parade will follow on St Patrick’s Day, March 17.


The Staten Island Business Outreach Centre is organising the new parade. The nonprofit organisation hopes it will be a symbol of unity for the city since everyone is welcome to participate regardless of their sexuality, gender identity, ethnicity or beliefs.

In the official statement, the nonprofit said the parade “not only enhances the vibrancy of our community but also serves as a shining example of unity for the entire city.”

The Pride Center of Staten Island (PCSI) lead organiser, Carol Bullock, was thrilled about the news. After repeatedly being rejected from the annual march, she said: “We are overjoyed that the Forest Avenue BID invited us to march in the Forest Avenue St. Patrick’s Day Parade on March 17.”

Port Richmond High School Principal Andrew Greenfield said, “My school has not marched in the parade for the last five years as a choice that the students made, but this year, I can’t wait to go back to work on Monday and tell the kids that we’re able to march in this parade.”

Similarly, Staten Island District Attorney Michael McMahon who previously boycotted the parade, said, “We look forward to once again donning our green, sharing perhaps a pint of Guinness, and kicking off a St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Staten Island that will not exclude participants based on who they are or who they love.”


Due to the “overwhelming interest” in the new event, PCSI is inviting those who would like to march to pre-register online.

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