Creating Collective Access
Practicing Crip Solidarity and Love

Crips Visiting Detroit!

Are you a crip and/or someone with a chronic illness that is going to be in Detroit this summer for the Allied Media Conference and/or the US Social Forum?

We know that for many of us, access is on our minds when it comes to traveling, navigating the city, movement spaces, buildings, sidewalks, public transportation, rides, the air, the bathrooms, the places to stay, the pace, the language,the cost, the crowds, the doors, the people who will be there and so so so much more.

Would you like to be connected to a network of crips and our allies/comrades who are working together to create collective access?

What is collective access?  Collective Access is access that we intentionally create collectively, instead of individually.

Most of the time, access is placed on the individual who needs it.  It is up to you to figure out your own access, or sometimes, up to you and your care giver, personal attendant (PA) or random friend.  Access is rarely weaved into a collective commitment and way of being; it is isolated and relegated to an after thought (much like disabled people).

Access is complex.  it is more than just having a ramp or getting disabled folks/crips into the meeting.  Access is a constant process that doesn’t stop.  It is hard and even when you have help, it can be impossible to figure out alone.

We are working to create mutual aid between crips and beyond!  Things we are thinking about as possibilities for collective access in Detroit:

  • collective eating and food gathering. having a central accessible place where we eat together.  This space could also be kid friendly to help provide mutual aid for parents and their children.  We may go on joint food runs to the grocery store or to pick up food and bring it back.
  • collectivizing rides–pooling transportation for those who need it.  helping to coordinate rides to and from places.
  • sharing information/communication. helping us be in touch to share information (about access, ableism that is happening, workshops, resources, etc.), connect and provide a working network of crips through out the AMC and the USSF.

The Network: We imagine that there will be pockets of planned access happening.  We cannot anticipate or meet everyone’s medical or access needs and we are sure that for a lot of you, you have your PAs, folks who you feel comfortable with and trust already lined up.  Our hope is to create a network that can connect these access pockets together. We hope we can help each other and share resources:  you can’t walk long distance, but i can speed in my chair down to the end of the block and get food; i can’t read, but you can, so you help me find my workshop in the schedule; you can help make calls to organize the food gathering and eating, while i carry the food up into the room.  We hope that together we can create a culture of collective access.

We are just trying this out! would you like to join us in practicing what this could look like?  do you have ideas?  are you an ally/comrade who wants to help out or be on call?

Please email creatingcollectiveaccess[at]gmail[dot]com.

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