If you are a faculty or staff member with a disability, join the upcoming kick-off meeting to help launch the new Disability Affinity Group. Connect with your peers and community, and help define the group’s function and operation. The first 30 minutes will be a time to acknowledge the land that we are on, and for people to settle in and get to know one another.
Overview of the Group
The Disability Affinity Group is for people who have lived experience with disability and/or identify as disabled. While we respect and appreciate the engagement of our allies, we request that this space remain exclusively for those who have lived experience with disability and/or identify as disabled. We hope to welcome our allies at a future event.
The group will provide an opportunity for faculty and staff living with disabilities to regularly meet and build a community of support, learning, and solidarity. In addition to building a supportive and inclusive community, the group will enable participants to share knowledge, strategies, and resources that can be applied to their own experiences as disabled staff and faculty.
This group is organized and supported by staff and faculty who identify as disabled.
Our understanding of disability is very broad. We understand disability inclusively to encompass neurodiversity, physical, mobility, sensory, learning, and cognitive disabilities, as well as chronic illnesses or pain, visible or invisible, and mental or emotional differences, through which a person’s body or mind may be perceived or experienced to be different from the “norm.” While we recognize that many Deaf people don’t identify as having a disability, we encourage Deaf and hard of hearing people to take part.
This group was conceptualized and created by Dr. Jennifer M. Gagnon with support from the Equity & Inclusion Office through an Equity Enhancement Fund application.
Dr. Jennifer M. Gagnon (she/her/hers) (PhD, Political Science, University of Minnesota, BA, University of British Columbia) is a sessional lecturer in the School of Journalism, Writing, and Media, Department of Political Science, and Vantage College at UBC. Her research is interdisciplinary and embraces a broad range of topics in political theory, classics, disability studies, international relations theory, qualitative methods, Universal Design for Learning (UDL), feminism, and gender. Her main area of research is in the intersections between ancient political thought and disability studies, especially as concerns gender, inclusion and exclusion, violence, and visible and invisible disabilities. As an activist, she is involved in efforts to promote a culture of consent, LGBTQ2SIA+ inclusion, and improve accessibility both on and off-campus. Dr. Gagnon identifies as a bisexual and disabled woman and strives to bring her whole self to both her teaching and research.
Emily Yee Clare (she/they) is an Equity Facilitator at the Equity & Inclusion Office and is excited to support this important initiative in this mandate. They are a disabled mixed-race (Hong Konger/Irish) illustrator and facilitator dedicated to creating compassionate & dynamic trainings based on anti-oppression and popular education practices.