The Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) is paying tribute to Civil Rights leader Rosa Parks’ legacy Thursday by reserving a commemorative seat for her on every bus across Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia.
WMATA has promoted the initiative to celebrate Rosa Parks Day, which takes place each year on Dec. 1 and Feb. 4. Thursday marks marks 67 years since Parks refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on an Alabama bus and cemented herself as an icon of the U.S. Civil Rights movement.
To commemorate Parks’ legacy, DMV residents and tourists can also explore the Rosa Parks Bus Thursday between 7:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. at the Anacostia Metro Station. The bus is a 1967 GMC bus that WMATA dedicated as the Rosa Parks Bus for Thursday’s celebrations.
It’s Rosa Parks Day! Join us at Anacostia Station today (12/1) until 12 pm. We’ve extended the time for you to view and capture our 1957 GMC bus dedicated to Rosa Parks. #wmata #yourmetro pic.twitter.com/kOcHQ8z7lQ
— Metro (@wmata) December 1, 2022
On Dec. 1, 1955, Rosa Parks helped initiate the U.S. Civil Rights movement when she was arrested after refusing to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Ala., bus.
Parks’ protest inspired the leaders of the local Black community to organize the Montgomery Bus Boycott – a social and political protest campaign against racial segregation on Alabama’s public transit system, according to the National Archives.
The successful boycott lasted more than a year and captured the nation’s attention. It led to the Supreme Court’s ruling in 1956 that declared segregation on public transportation systems unconstitutional.