DRW Statement on the Inclusion of WoLF in WIPIIP

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Read DRW’s full statement here (accessible PDF).

Disability Rights Wisconsin (DRW) is the Protection and Advocacy agency for people with disabilities in the state of Wisconsin. DRW challenges systems and society to achieve positive changes in the lives of people with disabilities and their families through legal advocacy and changes to public policy. Our stated values include diversity, dignity, independence, accessibility, inclusion, human rights, and liberation. DRW was founded to end abuse and discrimination against all people with disabilities and we remain dedicated to that goal.

Disability Rights Wisconsin is committed to creating a diverse and culturally competent workplace and to providing culturally competent services to our clients. A diversity-informed and culturally competent approach to disability rights recognizes the intersectional nature of oppression experienced by people with disabilities who experience oppression across multiple identities. We strive to create a welcoming and inclusive environment at DRW for individuals with diverse identities and focus our services on injustices that occur at the intersection of disability and other marginalized identities such as race, cultural and ethnic heritage, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, sexual orientation, and religious traditions. Diversity in this context means identities and/or individuals from historically oppressed and marginalized groups.

DRW stands in support of all transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming people, particularly Black and Latinx transgender women who are at a significantly higher risk of being subject to sexual assault and murder. DRW denounces WoLF’s dehumanization of transgender women and girls, and non-binary and gender non-conforming people under the pretext of acting on behalf of women and girls. It is by using a truly intersectional approach to civil rights that we will obtain justice and equity for all marginalized people.

For these reasons, DRW felt compelled to take this opportunity as an educational moment to inform the public, the hosts of this event, the employer participants and law student applicants on our mission and values as an organization. Penalizing the students by otherwise inconveniencing them or undermining their efforts is not our goal and we will continue with our previous commitment to participate in the WIPIIP program. However, DRW remains steadfast in our solidarity to raise awareness and end disability and gender-based violence and discrimination.