by Luticha André Doucette
My name is Luticha André Doucette and I am the Equity Coordinator in the Mayor’s Office of Community Wealth Building, located in Rochester NY.
Disability is extremely important when it comes to policy. Disability is the largest equity issue that continues to be neglected in our policies, practices, and procedures. Particularly at the intersection of race and disability, we see the largest inequities. From our urban centers not having access to transportation, accessible housing options for all income levels, and access to medical care that considers disabled bodies – in each of these areas, if we focus on the disability experience first, then we can ensure that everyone has access.
This conference was made accessible by a couple of different features but mainly that my hotel room was beautiful and accessible. It had a large bathroom that I could easily reach the sink as well as having room to maneuver to get to the toilet or the shower.
Personally and professionally, the conference helped me in our work in the city of Rochester by addressing how we can maintain that focus and center disability in the work that we do. Too often disability is seen as a separate issue, when really it should be the foundation from which all policy stems from. Making connections with other policy workers, as well as talking to other disabled people, helps me communicate best practices to our elected officials and emphasize the importance of leading with disability and race.
The Conference Accessibility Initiative by JP Morgan Chase and WID made a difference for people with disabilities. I spoke to people who enjoyed the live captioning, which also helped to normalize captions within a nondisabled space. People quickly realized how it could be beneficial for everybody. More conferences should take advantage of the services of WID in order to make their events more inclusive.
Would you like to be a Disability Ambassador with WID and JP Morgan & Chase? Keep an eye out for applications for 2020, coming soon!
To read more about our Disability Ambassadors’ experiences at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation 2019 Annual Leadership Conference, follow either link below:
For more Disability Ambassador blogs, check out our Conference Accessibility Initiative 2019 page.
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