Demand Accessible Activism, not exclusion or tokenism. Activists with dis/abilities face enough disgusting barriers in life as is, let me the movement: be the change we want to see!
First things first for any activist who is differently abled: If anyone dares to tell you to stay home from a demo because they cannot accommodate you into their demo, here’s what you do:
They say: “Stay Home”
You say: Fuck off!
There is only so much understanding I can give to organizers who do not walk their own talk when it comes to the movement they claim to represent. I mean, I understand that we all grow up socialized by the racist/sexist/ableist nature of our capitalist system, but I demand that we all try working on our own shit as we also confront the system.
That said, it is unfair to suggest that a differently abled activist who happens to move, communicate or process information different from the mainstream(=law of averages) stay home and not participate in their own way because someone (I’m making this personal about people dealing with their own shit and refuse to refract this back on the Movement as a whole) cannot handle the concept of real, honest inclusion.
One of the major social-economic-political barriers that people who have dis/abilities face is isolation so suggesting that they stay home and you will protest on their behalf.
Hell, with allies like these, who needs enemies?
Moving through that anger to a better place, I want to note that I have always found myself in the role of pathfinder/teacher in regards to Accessible Activism and have the support and alliance of many amazing activists who I know have my back. This includes David who will have my six during the street demonstrations [NOTE: Everyone should bring a buddy (use the buddy system) at any of the demonstrations this weekend] Shout out to David: Thank you / Merci / Miigwetch!
I’m posting the backgrounder I wrote on the need for Accessible Activism Here
Below I’m going to post the DAMN the G20 call out:
DAMN THE G20. JOIN US IN THE STREETS.
DAMN, a direct-action cross-disability coalition, asks you to join us to
show the power and strength of disabled community in opposing the G20
The leaders of the G20 are responsible for the brutal neo-liberal
capitalist policies that have kept us pushed and policed out of our
streets, socially isolated, discriminated against and denied access.
The city put one billion dollars into the G20. At the same time, the
special diet has been cut, and services for poor and disabled people
have decreased dramatically.
Help us show the G20 leaders that we will not be silent.
This Friday, come out and say and sign: DAMN THEM.
JUSTICE FOR OUR COMMUNITIES!
NO TO G8/G20! YES TO TAKING BACK OUR CITY!
Friday, June 25th, 2010 – 2:30pm
Allan Gardens (Carleton St. and Sherbourne St.)
RALLY. MARCH. BLOCK PARTY. TENT CITY
For more information: http://25june.wordpress.com/
–Accessibility Marshalls available at the march.
–ASL interpretation available at rally and march.
–Attendant Care available throughout.
–Wheelchair accessible bus departs 2pm from Yonge and Dundas.
–Please contact [email protected] with any questions
Also, I’m posting a note about Accessibility at the Toronto Community Mobilization Network
G8/G20 PEOPLES CONVERGENCE SPACE
1266 QUEEN STREET WEST (just west off Noble)
TCMN’s Convergence Space and Accessibility
As of the evening of June 17th, the Convergence Space will have a barrier free entrance. Due to landlord concerns about the sharing of space, the accessible entrance is not the primary entrance. We recognize that the dynamic of asking people to use a separate entrance is problematic, and we apologize. There will be a doorbell outside of the main entrance. When you ring this doorbell, we will open the barrier-free entrance and show you how to get to it.
We can use the accessible washroom at Parkdale Community Legal Services (PCLS) next door during their open hours. PCLS is open during the following hours:
Monday 9:00 A.M. – 6:00 P.M.
Tuesday 9:00 A.M. – 7:00 P.M.
Wednesday 2:00 P.M. – 5:00 P.M.
Thursday 9:00 A.M. – 7:00 P.M.
Friday 9:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M.
Starting on Friday, June 18th, outside of these hours, there will be a commode chair available inside of the convergence space itself. The commode chair will be separated from the rest of the space using thick, dark curtains, and there will be basins available for handwashing.
Accessible transportation to and from actions
Throughout the week of June 21st through June 27th, we will be providing accessible transportation from the convergence space to and from actions and meetings and other transportation if necessary. If you are coming from out of town, we can also provide you with information about Toronto’s public transit system. To get in touch with the transportation team, you can call 647.448.7039, email [email protected]m, or speak with someone in the convergence space.
The convergence space will be staffed with people who can provide attendant care. They will be wearing armbands to identify them, and they will be pointed out to everyone accessing the space. Mutual aid is an important tenet of our movement, and asking others for help is a political act. We hope you feel comfortable talking to us.
Sexual Assault Policy
The TCMN is a survivor-centric space with no room for perpetrators of sexual assault. Read our full sexual assault policy here, with information on who to contact for support:
We are waiting for confirmation from ASL interpreters for the opening party and both assembly meetings. When we have confirmation, we will forward that information widely. If you’d like to check in with us, you can email [email protected].
Legal support TTY phone
The Movement Defense office has a TTY line. If you are arrested or want information about friends and family, you can reach them at 416.531.0060.
The entire convergence space has a nut-free policy. The People’s Kitchen will be serving one meal a day during the week of June 21st-27th with both omnivore and vegan options. If you have other food allergies, please let the People’s Kitchen know as soon as possible at [email protected]
The Convergence Space is a scent-free space. Please don’t wear any scented products, including perfume, cologne, essential oils or scents that may be remaining from soap, shampoo or other bath products.
Large print formats
All of our policies and the welcoming booklet will exist in a large-print format
If you have questions or concerns, need more details, have suggestions, or just want to chat, you can email [email protected], call 647-448-7039, or speak with someone in the convergence space.
Remember: You don’t have to stand up to fight back!