In 1999, at the urging of our sister/colleague Barbara Faye Waxman Fiduccia, the Center for Women Policy Studies launched a new series of publications on women and girls with disabilities -- beginning with two groundbreaking reports, Violence Against Disabled Women: Research and Data in Brief and Women and Girls with Disabilities: Defining the Issues -- An Overview. Barbara envisioned and co-authored both of these reports and together we began to make plans for several additional reports and for a larger program of policy leadership and training for activist disabled women.
Sadly, we lost Barbara in April of 2001 and will always miss her great and powerful spirit and her passion to ensure the full human rights of women and girls with disabilities. We continue this work, therefore, in her name, in her feminist spirit, and in her memory.
This report, written by Harilyn Rousso, one of leaders in the struggle for educational equity for women and girls with disabilities, is the second report in the Center's Barbara Waxman Fiduccia Papers on Women and Girls with Disabilities.
As Barbara and I noted in the Introduction to Women and Girls with Disabilities: Defining the Issues -- An Overview:
"Disabled women and girls are of all ages, all racial, ethnic, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds and sexual orientations; they live in rural, urban and suburban communities....Disabled women and girls live at the corner of disability and womanhood -- with two 'minority' identities, a double dose of discrimination and stereotyping and multiple barriers to achieving their life goals....While many women with disabilities derive enormous strength, resilience and creativity from their multiple identities, they also face the consequences of discrimination...
Yet, the self-defined needs of women with disabilities remain on the margins of the social justice movements that should represent them -- the women's movement, the disability rights movement, and the civil rights movement -- leaving disabled women and girls of all backgrounds essentially invisible."
The Center for Women Policy Studies presents the Barbara Waxman Fiduccia Papers on Women and Girls with Disabilities as our small contribution to ending this invisibility and bringing the self-defined needs of women and girls with disabilities to policy makers, advocates, educators, and the general public.
We are especially grateful to Susan O'Hara and the True North Foundation for their generous support for the development and production of this series of reports. And we remain grateful to Felicia Lynch, former president of Women and Philanthropy, for her visionary leadership in bringing the self-defined needs of women with disabilities to philanthropy.
Leslie R. Wolfe
Center for Women Policy Studies
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|Publication:||Strong Proud Sisters: Girls and Young Women with Disabilities|
|Article Type:||Topic Overview|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2001|
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