Graphic: The Disability Rights and Independent Living Movement

Carol Fewell Billings

Audio transcript: On changes regarding discrimination against people with disabilities
Date: July 23, 1998
Interviewer: Kathy Cowan

Note: Transcripts have been lightly edited; therefore there may be slight discrepancies with audio clips.


Cowan:
[laughs] Did you notice over this time that you were there, still at PDSP, that things were changing in the community in terms of discrimination against people with disabilities?

Billings:
Well, when I first got there I was married to a disabled man and there was a lot of discussion, of course, within the community about personal relationships and how you deal with the different problems. And one of the problems was the way people would look at you and view you as a couple or as a person. And I think as more people became visible as independent human beings or powerful human beings or human beings with purpose or whatever—things sort of organically started to change. Just by being around it, you can't but see things differently.

And then as PDSP and CIL became more of a force in the community, always with the idea that the leaders were the physically disabled and blind and deaf themselves, that was another way of changing people's views. And the other thing was keeping in mind that there are these people that need certain things so that whenever new streets were built, ramps were put in. It seems like a really small thing, but having that in the consciousness in the community was pretty important.

End of transcript


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