Josh Mirsky stands in Glen Cove on Thursday as the Neurodivergent...

Josh Mirsky stands in Glen Cove on Thursday as the Neurodivergent Strength Awareness flag flies behind him.

  Credit: Rick Kopstein

A flag promoting neurodivergent awareness, raised in Glen Cove on Thursday, could be on its way to becoming an official state emblem, thanks to a Jericho man. 

Elected officials hoisted the Neurodivergent Strength Awareness flag on a sunny morning at Village Square in downtown Glen Cove Thursday, in honor of Autism Awareness Month. And state lawmakers are in the midst of considering it for state status.

Josh Mirsky, 31, who is on the autism spectrum, has been pushing for the flag's recognition to fight stigmas facing neurodivergent people.

“The flag represents a group of people that's struggling being marginalized and not taken seriously,” Mirsky said. “We're trying to change that.”

Mirsky said he was inspired to create the flag by observing how the Pride flag strongly represented and solidified the acceptance of the LGBTQ community.

“Whenever you see the Pride flag, you know that the place that’s displaying it supports that. So why didn't the neurodiversity people have it?” he said.

The concept of neurodiversity holds that autism, dyslexia and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, among others, are normal variations in the ways a brain functions.

Mirsky's flag is intended to show that neurodivergent people are equal members of society. It includes an infinity symbol in the design, which represents the range of how neurodivergent people think, learn and behave.

"We know our value, we know what we bring to the table,” he said. “It's not something to be scoffed at.”

The flag’s colors also hold meaning.

Gold “unapologetically” represents coming in first place, as neurodivergent people are “tired of being treated as second- or third-class citizens” in society, while red represents power, he said.

“It's meant to be bold. It's meant to be almost in your face, because that's the only way to make change,” Mirsky said.

Mirsky brought the flag’s design to state Assemb. Charles D. Lavine (D-Glen Cove) about a year ago, with the intent of making the design the official state flag for neurodivergent awareness.

On April 4, the bill was passed unanimously in the State Senate and awaits a vote by the Assembly, where it is expected to pass as well. Lavine introduced Mirsky on March 18 on the floor of the Assembly chamber, in honor of Neurodiversity Celebration Week.

“Josh is a stalwart, an ardent advocate for human rights,” Lavine said next to Mirsky at the flag-raising ceremony. “He stands for community, he stands for respect for folks who are neurodivergent and I got the feeling that if we all were tested right now, almost every one of us and then some who would be neurodivergent. That's what makes us a great community."

Justin Timberlake's attorney speaks … Brooklyn pizza tour bus Credit: Newsday

Updated 39 minutes ago Long Beach crowd averted ... Justin Timberlake's attorney speaks ... Brooklyn pizza tour bus ... Juneteenth holiday

Justin Timberlake's attorney speaks … Brooklyn pizza tour bus Credit: Newsday

Updated 39 minutes ago Long Beach crowd averted ... Justin Timberlake's attorney speaks ... Brooklyn pizza tour bus ... Juneteenth holiday

Latest videos

SUBSCRIBE

Unlimited Digital AccessOnly 25¢for 5 months

ACT NOWSALE ENDS SOON | CANCEL ANYTIME