A Message from Theo Braddy, New Executive Director, National Council on Independent Living

From Theo Braddy: For Complete Post, Click Here…

The theme for the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) 2023 Annual Conference on Independent Living is Indivisible! What a perfect choice of a word that defines what should be the most crucial goal of our movement.

There are so many oppositions and forces within society that create division and separate us – racism, ableism, colonialism, capitalism, sexism, to name just a few. Even the disability community has fallen victim to division and separatism among us. As we fight and advocate against discrimination and oppression, we must ensure that other groups are welcome and be united with one collective voice.

The intersectionality of disability justice is a challenge we must face, and we must embrace that challenge! This means we must include the voices of the black community with disabilities, people of color with disabilities, immigrants with disabilities, disabled people who practice marginalized religions, queer folks with disabilities, trans and gender non-conforming people with disabilities, people with disabilities who are homeless, people with disabilities who are incarcerated, and so on. We cannot forget about our brothers and sisters from these marginalized groups with disabilities.

And then there are other marginalized groups that are not disabled that need to be among our collective voice, many who also know the sting of discrimination and oppression, such as women’s groups, Black Americans, Indigenous People, People of Color and the LGBTQ+ Community, and so many others.

My name is Theo Braddy, and I am a black man with a disability. I believe that all people should be treated with dignity and respect, and I have worked my entire career for that purpose.

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