Emily Bazelon, “Sticks and Stones”
Partnerships and Alliances
“When spider webs unite, they can tie up a lion,” says an Ethiopian proverb. We value the power of partnerships and … More
Telling Our Stories, Sharing Our Lives
“Stories matter. Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign, but stories can also be used to … More
STACY PARKER INTERVIEWS ARTWORKS ARTISTS (Featuring work by Valerie and Brad) Valerie is a very active person. … More
What does the Aurora Foundation of Southern Arizona do?
We don’t mean to brag, but we do important work! We’re the only nonprofit organization in Southern Arizona that advocates exclusively for justice for all disabled people. And by justice we mean full inclusion, equity, and access for those with disabilities -- currently the largest and most marginalized minority group in our nation.
Why is this work so important?
Abilities and skills. Talents and mastery. Dreams and determination. Recognition and belonging. Fairness and access. Everyone has them -- human capacities, human desires.
Yet, the largest minority group in our nation confronts everyday barriers, excluding them from access to equitable experiences and opportunities to achieve their capacities and desires.
While some physical spaces provide ramps that enable mobility devices to enter the space, many still do not. Some doctors’ offices provide adjustable height examining tables for people with physical and mobility limitations; most do not. Some movie theaters provide closed captioning for people who have hearing impairments; most do not. Some employers hire people with disabilities because they have the knowledge, skills, and motivation that it takes to do the work; most do not. Some people see and value the capacities and desires of people with disabilities; many do not.
We are proud of a decade plus of providing services to women with disabilities. (See the About Us page to read more about the 1500 women who have received these services.)
Now in our second decade, we reach out to our community and partners, governments and agencies, all people with disabilities as well those without disabilities to work together in advocating for inclusion, equity, and access. Together, pursuing policies to bring about disability justice, and designing a just and welcoming society where everyone is fully included with access to abundant opportunities to achieve their potential.
Communities and society have not yet recognized that physical and attitudinal barriers disable. Our work is focused and long-term.
What is the Aurora Foundation doing to remove these barriers?
We educate and encourage re-thinking among those who build physical spaces, provide medical care, offer entertainment, make choices in hiring, and with embedded negative attitudes, stigma, and unfounded beliefs about ‘disability’.
Each program is an advocacy tool (see Ideas Making a Difference, Thoughtful Questions, Challenging Answers, Telling Our Stories, Sharing Our Lives). Each partnership is a tool for education and awareness (see Partners and Alliances).
We advocate to and with people without disabilities to reframe attitudes, beliefs, and language about disability. Value rather than devalue human diversity and complexity so that label “disability” becomes irrelevant (see Community Making a Difference).
We work with local policymakers as they consider legislation to remove barriers of bias that affect people with disabilities (see Influencing Policy Solutions for Disability Justice).
What will our communities look like when the Aurora Foundation succeeds?
We know that success is a long-term process. At its core is deliberate, ongoing, meaningful and authentic dialogue for change.
And, in the end, disability justice emerges when families and friends, neighbors and communities, employers and co-workers, allies and decision-makers, doctors and theater owners, governments and agencies, and many others take action together to dismantle barriers that foster bias and deny access. Is it success?
It’s only a beginning.
Media Making a Difference
Single film and full-series movie pass tickets are on sale now, and can be purchased online at … MORE INFO...
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