NEW YORK—New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on Feb. 4 said he will not march in the city’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade because organizers do not allow gays and lesbians to openly participate.
“No, I am not planning on marching in the parade,” de Blasio told reporters during a press conference as the New York Daily News reported. “I will be participating in a number of other events to honor the Irish heritage of this city, but I simply disagree with the organizers of that parade.”
De Blasio’s predecessors — Michael Bloomberg and Rudy Giuliani — both marched in the parade. Former New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn boycotted the annual event that takes place on Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan.
An LGBT-inclusive St. Patrick’s Day parade in Queens, N.Y., draws tens of thousands of people to the borough each year.
De Blasio said uniformed city workers can take part in the Manhattan parade “if they choose to.”