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Disability Rights and Justice Movement (redirected from Disability Justice Movement)

Page history last edited by Grace Barton 2 years, 11 months ago


Disability and Social Movements - Project Citizenship

The Disability Rights Movement is a global movement for equal opportunities and rights for people across the disability spectrum.


It includes access and safety in physical environments, buildings and transportation; “equal opportunities in independent living, employment equity, education, and housing; and freedom from discrimination, abuse, neglect, and other violations.” 







  Haben Girma Biography by Harvard Law


“We all have the power to create our own stories, and in particular for disability, I choose to believe that alternative techniques are equal in value to mainstream techniques, so from everything in my life from reading to public speaking I’ve found alternative techniques that allow me to access information in a different way, but that different way is equal in value to mainstream way of doing things.” 

- Haben Girma, Disability Rights Activist and first Deafblind Graduate of Harvard Law School




"Some people may have thought it was undignified for people in wheelchairs to crawl in that manner, but I felt that it was necessary to show the country what kinds of things people with disabilities have to face on a day-to-day basis. We had to be willing to fight for what we believed in."

- Michael Winter, Former Director of the Center for Independent Living, Hawaii and Berkeley, California




Disability Justice and Disability Rights


Related imageImage result for disability justice


History of the Movement


The Disability Rights Movement started in the 1960’s in the United States; encouraged by the civil rights movement.


Through nonviolent protests, sit-in’s and “silent armies” that worked behind the scenes, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Individuals with Disabilities Education Act were created 





               Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Overview of the ADA


               -July 26, 1990: President Bush signs the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), major civil rights legislation



              To protect disabled Americans from discriminatory and oppressive behavior and from engaging fully as participants in society






United States Department of Labor poster celebrating the 20th anniversary of the 

Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 featuring Helen Keller and Justin Dart, Jr. 

Poster by the United States Department of Labor celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 featuring Helen Keller and Justin Dart, Jr., 2010



Americans with Disabilities Act of 1991



Helen Keller and Justin Dart, Jr. lived political lives. 


They wanted to affect societal change that would be part of our society today. 


Fighting racial discrimination, seeking equal rights for all citizens and defending those in need were the life work of these people.




Read Political activities on Helen Keller's wikipedia page to learn about her political activism.


Helen Keller, Social Activist, Defender of the Needy

1.List four causes for social justice Helen Keller supported during her lifetime that you were not aware of till researching for this assignment. 

In school were you taught about Keller's life-long political activism? If not, what did you learn about her?

Not for the assignment, but if you are interested in learning more information, link to Helen Keller Biography page


Read Background, Activism, Road to Freedom parts 1+2 on Justin Dart, Jr.'s Wikipedia page to learn about his political activism.


Justin Dart, Jr., Social Activitist, Force for the Disabled


2. Justin Dart, Jr. became an advocate for the disadvantaged after he contracted polio. Beginning in 1952 at the segregated University of Houston, and throughout his life, he fought for causes that changed society. 


  • What did you discover he accomplished in his life?
  • In elementary, middle, high school or college classes, did you learn about Dart and his work on behalf of people?





 Classroom Learning Resources







 Video Resources






Multicultural Resources

  • Disability Rights and the Civil Rights Movement 





Disability History Series - National Park Service












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