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NEW YORK, NY (JULY 7, 2021) - Democratic nominee for mayor Eric Adams joined YAI and thousands of frontline workers who marched their way from Battery Park and headed down Broadway’s “Canyon of Heroes” Wednesday in celebration of essential workers during the “Hometown Heroes” parade – the largest ticker-tape parade in the City’s history.  

For part of the parade route, Adams walked with YAI staff holding the nonprofit’s banner that read “Seeing beyond disability.” He recognized the important work all of the organization’s essential workers have done to keep people with developmental disabilities safe and informed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) suffered a COVID mortality rate three times higher than their neurotypical counterparts. 

"The Mayor's office chose to highlight YAI today to honor our essential workers in the Hometown Heroes parade. Our direct support professionals, nurses, employment specialists, social workers, teachers, and more, have been working tirelessly during the COVID pandemic to offer the highest quality services to the people we support, and likewise deserve the highest honors,” said Scott Karolidis, YAI’s Director of Government Relations. “We are grateful that Brooklyn Borough President and Democratic nominee for mayor, Eric Adams, joined our YAI contingent to affirm his commitment to the workers that power our agency. We look forward to translating the high praise for our workers into meaningful gains for them in the year ahead." 


Kamana Shrestha

ABOUT YAI: Founded in 1957, YAI remains at the forefront of an extraordinary movement aimed at empowering people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. YAI and its network of affiliate agencies offer children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities a comprehensive range of services. YAI is committed to seeing beyond disability, providing opportunities for people to live, love, work, and learn in their communities. YAI’s 4,000 employees provide supportive housing, education, medical, dental, and mental health care, job training, community integration, and social enrichment for more than 20,000 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their families, in New York, New Jersey, and California.