Vision, Passion, Action

Featured Campaigns

Dignity for All: the campaign for a poverty-free Canada

A Call to Action - U.N. Convention Update

Anti-Poverty Actions in Ontario

Activist Stories

Globe and Mail Article 'Mad' and proud of it.

Activism

Disability activism is both creative and transformative, and is found in politics, scholarship, artistic work, legal advocacy and policy reform. It is a project which involves both celebration and struggle, solidarity and subversion, the reclaiming of histories and the shaping of radically new futures. Disability activism is at its most potent, when the experiences, identities and voices of disabled people are central and uncompromised.

This area of our web site features a sampling of disability activist initiatives at the School of Disability Studies. It is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather illustrative of the many forms, rhythms and dimensions of disabled people's quests for equality, inclusion, respect and recognition.

Kathryn Church speaks at Toronto Disability Pride March 2014

Issues of disability are not just questions of impairment, functional limitations, or enfeeblement; they are issues of social values, institutional priorities, and political will. They are questions of power: of who and what gets valued, and who and what gets marginalized. ... Critical disability theory goes beyond political analysis to pursue a politics of transformation. In this regard it asks not only the traditional question of what is to be done, but also, who is to do it?

Richard Devlin and Dianne Pothier, Toward a Critical Theory of Dis-Citizenship, 2006

Not only is our social positioning unfair, but the justificatory theories relied upon to account for our disadvantage are without substance. Disabled people have not been treated fairly, nor have the deprivations of our lives been natural. ... And so, as disabled people, we have pushed back against the forms and structures of disadvantage. We have spoken in timbres shrill and plaintive, in sound bites and slogans and full paragraphs, in newsrooms, courtrooms, boardrooms and classrooms, with vocabularies of argument and reproach. We have high-roaded and horse traded, made friends and enemies, reframed and regrouped, and always pressed on.

Catherine Frazee, Vectors of Resistance: Disabled People and the Claim to Freedom, 2007