As an organization committed to fighting for the basic human and civil rights of people with disabilities, the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Association of New York State stands in solidarity with black and brown communities seeking their basic human right to survive. George Floyd. Breona Taylor. Ahmaud Arbery. These are only the latest examples of those who were killed because of the color of their skin. We say their names in honor of the life they unjustly lost as we call for society to take steps to end the institutionalized racism.
As an organization committed to ensuring the ability of people with disabilities and seniors to enjoy their basic human rights to live in the community, we recognize that no community can be free if every community is not free. The disability community cannot move forward if Black and Brown people, able-bodied or not, are not afforded their basic human right to live in the community without discrimination or fear of being killed at the hands of the government they have every right to expect to protect them. An injustice to one is an injustice to all.
People with disabilities face legitimate fears from ableism, including access to services in the community, the rationing of medical supplies because of COVID, and ableist interpretations of quality of life that influence their ability to receive life-saving treatment when necessary. However, we recognize the fears of our Black and Brown seniors and disabled are even greater because of the combination that institutional racism and ableism pose in their ability to live. We have witnessed the disproportionate impact that COVID-19 has had on Black and Brown people, both in the community and in nursing homes. We also know that disabled Black and Brown people are even more likely to experience violence from both police and the larger community because of that combination. When this combines with the health disparities they face because of the institutional racism within this country, it adds even more stress, further exacerbating all of the issues.
CDPAANYS is committed to working to alleviate these issues within our community and outside of it. We will be active participants in the fight for social justice for all, as impacted individuals and allies. We will work to lift voices from within impacted communities to make their voices heard in this critical moment. We reject all forms of intolerance and ask the community to stand together as we fight not just ableism, but racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, transphobia, and inequity and discrimination in any form it takes.