Disability Justice, COVID, and Community Organizing
Reading and Resource List
Disability Justice Reading List
Introductory, syllabi, curricula
Autistic Women and Nonbinary Network Guiding Principles: Incorporating Transformative and Restorative Justice into Our Work – Autistic Women and Nonbinary Network
COVID-specific Advocacy Resources
General list of COVID orgs in US and Canada
COVID Safety When Gathering
Advocacy care strategies in pandemic times
During this mass-traumatizing event we are all experiencing, it is important to hold space for the ways that participating in advocacy can bring up trauma and take a toll on us - and also -participating in advocacy can also be healing or a form of care itself. Some strategies to practice care for each other include:
Holding peer support spaces, debriefing meetings, spaces to share experiences both uplifting each other and commiserating through the struggle.
Use actions to build community – keep in touch with the folks you organize with and bring in people who show support to not only build momentum, but get to know your neighbors and allies and build a longer term movement and support system together.
A few strategies for building community virtually – start a group on a social media platform, discord server, group chat, email listserv, or create a google form where people can sign up to get involved or join your community.
Establish community norms for your spaces and for all who participate in actions together based on your shared values and needs, to help foster a community of mutual care, respect, and safety.
Be cognizant of how power and privilege play out in advocacy and community spaces and center the most impacted and most marginalized people in the community. It is essential to acknowledge that we are not all impacted by the pandemic equally – the compounding impact of systemic oppressions, marginalization, and injustices shape experiences of the pandemic as well as the spaces we share.
The community we build must keep sustainability in mind and mind peoples limits and boundaries.
Community can also be for support, a space to vent, celebrate wins, and even a space for joy. In isolating times it is radical to create intentional spaces where we can enjoy each others company in accessible ways, you can grow friendships with people that value COVID safety like you do, you could host a virtual game night, meet up with other COVID-cognizant people outdoors and masked, have a virtual hangout on Zoom, lots of creative ideas. With-ness is powerful in itself.
General activism resources
(This toolkit isn’t age specific, it’s great for all beginning activists!)
Digital and social media
Activism and self care
Think about what the top key messages that you want to communicate are – it can be helpful to write out an outline for what you would want to say, ahead of your action or any media opportunities. If there are moments you are unsure what to say next, stick with your key messages – you can always connect the conversation back to those points.
If you’re nervous or talking to the media for the first time, know that it’s okay to have notes with you, especially on Zoom.
If there are any facts or figures, or other groups/people’s work you mention in the interview, it is a best practice to send the link or source afterwards as follow up so the reporter knows the full context – it also helps support your points by showing that your perspective is shared by others, and uplifts the work supporting you or allied with your cause.
At the end of an interview, reporters may ask some variation of “is there anything else you want me to know” – if you don’t have anything on the spot but want to be sure you cover everything, you can say something like “I don’t have anything at the moment but I will follow up if I do later”
You don’t have to answer any questions you are not comfortable answering
Reading previous articles reporters have written can help give you an idea of what angle they are reporting from and what their background is on different issues