The Arc Oregon joins in solidarity with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color against racism and systemic oppression. We recognize the disproportionate impact of police brutality against these communities, which includes people with disabilities.

We acknowledge our responsibility to:

  • Identify and confront our own shortcomings in addressing the institutional and unconscious biases within ourselves and our organization.
  • Recognize the role our own privilege plays in our approach to advocacy.
  • Hold ourselves accountable for becoming more effective allies through learning about the intersectionality of race and disability.
  • Highlight the importance of understanding the impacts of racism and oppression in our fight for equity.

In our efforts to bring sustainable transformation to our communities, we will continue to advocate for a world where every person is afforded the dignity, respect, and self-determination to which they are entitled. We commit to learn more and do better, and consciously and continuously confront and improve our organizational practices in our ongoing fight for social justice for all people.

Disability Rights and Racial Equity

As disability advocates, we recognize the racial disparities that exist in the diability community and understand that disability rights and racial equity are deeply connected. 

The following examples of this relationship are provided by The Arc US:

  • Labor force participation is lower for Black people with disabilities (17.7%) compared to those who are white (21%)
  • Black children with disabilities lose more days of instruction from school suspension (121 days/100 students), compared to white students with disabilities (43 days/100 students)
  • 25% of Black students with disabilities never graduate high school, compared to 16% of non-Hispanic white students
  • The cumulative probability of arrest by age 28 is 55.17 for Black individuals with disabilities, compared to 39.7 for white individuals with disabilities

We pledge to do more to address this critical intersection of the disability community and Black, Indigenous, and People of Color in our ongoing fight for disability rights and racial equity.

Statement from The Arc US

June 2, 2020

The Arc released the following statement on the need for swift and substantial action in our society and from our nation’s leaders to dismantle racism, end discrimination, and to honor, protect, and enforce the civil and human rights of all people.

“The ongoing violence and police brutality against Black and Brown people in our country is unacceptable. We stand in solidarity with every person and community that is appalled by the homicide of George Floyd, and so many others before him. We stand in solidarity too with those who are taking action against the systemic racism that underlies this behavior. Racist attitudes and behavior should have no place in America.

“Tragically, the historical and everyday reality is that the lives and humanity of people of color, and members of other marginalized communities, are too often not valued and respected. The Arc renews its own commitment to social justice and the dismantling of the systems of oppression and discrimination that further this violence and neglect.

“We all must step up and speak out, including our nation’s leaders, to uphold the rights of communities of color to be free from over policing, police brutality, misconduct, harassment, and racism. To be silent is to be complicit,” said Peter Berns, CEO, The Arc.  

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