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Disability Justice

A DEFINITION:
disability justice: A framework that works to centralize the experiences of disabled people who also experience other oppressed identities and inequities, and whose experiences are not addressed by mainstream disability rights movements. The term was coined in 2005 by a group of disabled queer women of color activists.

CONTEXT & HISTORY:
Disability Justice was built because the Disability Rights Movement and Disability Studies do not inherently centralize the needs and experiences of folks experiencing intersectional oppression, such as disabled people of color, immigrants with disabilities, queers with disabilities, trans and gender non-conforming people with disabilities, people with disabilities who are houseless, people with disabilities who are incarcerated, people with disabilities who have had their ancestral lands stolen, amongst others.
The term “disability justice” was coined out of conversations between disabled queer women of color activists in 2005 seeking to challenge radical and progressive movements to more fully address ableism. (Hampshire College Library)

A framework that acknowledges “the intersecting legacies of white supremacy, colonial capitalism, gendered oppression and ableism in understanding how people’s bodies and minds are labelled ‘deviant’, ‘unproductive’, ‘disposable’ and/or ‘invalid.’” (Project LETS)

MEDIA LINKS:
My Body Doesn’t Oppress Me, Society Does with Patty Berne and Stacy Milbern (5-minute video)

10 Principles of Disability Justice from Sins Invalid (3-minute read)

An abbreviated version of the 10 Principles of Disability Justice: Intersectionality, Leadership of the Most Impacted, Anti-Capitalistic Politic, Commitment to Cross-Movement Organizing, Recognizing Wholeness, Sustainability, Commitment to Cross-Disability Solidarity, Interdependence, Collective Access, Collective Liberation

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