What does collective access look like with less than three weeks to plan, you ask? Well, we are wondering the same thing!
This is a work in progress and, as is the case with most access, we won’t know what things will look like until we actually get to Detroit. We are excited to try this out and lovingly practice the kind of access we dream about, knowing that we are interacting with an ableist and inaccessible world. And we know there is a ton of learning that will be part of this, for all of us! This is community run, so here we go!
Given the time crunch and our capacities, here is what we are thinking for Detroit: (1) PODS! (2) FOOD and TRANSPORTATION!
(1) we figure that most disabled folk who are coming to Detroit will have some kind of access plan in place, whether it’s with a PA, friend(s), care-giver, etc. Most folks will be coming to Detroit with/in a pod. So, our work will be to try and connect these pods together, since we totally acknowledge that most access is done through relationships and it is really important for folks to feel comfortable with the folks who are helping them with access AND because we can’t possibly anticipate nor do we have the capacity to meet everyone’s access and medical needs.
let us know about your pod! Who is in your pod? You can even name your pod! What kinds of things might you need with regards to access? what things can you offer?
some examples might be: our pod is named the Glitter Otters! There are 3 of us: i am disabled, my PA and my friend who is also disabled. we will have one van and one disabled parking permit, i have access to a credit card, i am great at coordinating folks. We will definitely need help getting to and from our community housing to the building where workshops are, we both need help lifting/carrying heavy things, and she can’t walk more than a block.
If you’re coming alone and not in a pod, but still want to be part of this–don’t worry! email us and let us know your needs and what you can offer! let’s work together!
(2) we are trying to organize folks to help out with two main tasks: food and transportation.
FOOD: if you’re interested, we would love to assign people to help out with different meals. We are planning to have a centralized eating place, at least for dinners, so we will need folks who want to help coordinate/get (affordable) food there and grocery shopping and anything else that comes up! We are hoping to form a group of folks who are committed to helping with food, and folks can certainly sign up for a night or two–let us know your capacity and let’s work together! We also need to figure out how to get people to the food, which leads us to…
TRANSPORTATION: how will folks be getting from place to place? will you have a car/van that you can share? can you drive? can you help coordinate rides via cell phone? let us know if you would like to be one of a handful of folks helping to coordinate rides if people need them. We would love to get a good idea of what kinds of resources we are working with (how many wheelchair accessible vans might we have at our disposal?) so that once we are on the ground, we can work to pool those resources. Are you and your PA heading out from your hotel for the day? perhaps you could swing by and pick up someone else?
So, if you want to be connected to this ever-growing network of crips for things like collective eating and help finding transportation and rides PLUS community building and support, let us know! email us at creatingcollectiveaccess[at]gmail[dot]com.