4 disabled lgbtq+ creators AND 4 ways to make pride more accessible
It’s the last day of June aka pride month, which like, HOW are we halfway through the year?! I’m definitely scraping by at the last minute, but I couldn’t let the month pass me by without at least one pride themed post! So much progress has been made, but the LGBTQ+ community still has a long way to go for equality and acceptance. It’s important to remember that pride isn’t just a celebration, it’s a protest. And while June is coming to an end, the reasons we have a pride month aren’t solved and unimportant on July 1st.
I was a little torn on what I wanted to write about today. Because I am all for celebrating such a diverse and incredible community, I wanted to highlight some disabled LGBTQ+ creators! And because I am also all for accessibility, I wanted to share some ways to make the community more inclusive for disabled people. And because I’m indecisive, we’re doing both!
If you’re looking for some talented babes to follow and some easy ways to make LGBT spaces more accessible – look no further, I’ve got you covered!
Creator #1 – Stevie Boebi!
Stevie creates lesbian sex ed videos and was recently diagnosed with Ehlers Danlos syndrome. She’s super open with everything she discusses and doesn’t hold back. When you watch her content, you know you’re getting honesty. I think it’s so important for young women to have proper sex ed, because what you learn in school is honestly pathetic when you’re straight and basically non existent if you’re not. She’s beautiful, talented, and all of her content is so well done. Plus, she’s begun talking more about her experiences with disability and joining that community. She’s a peach and I hope you’ll check her out her channel and Patreon!
Accessibility tip #1 – Ramps aren’t enough
Okay, we’re going to start out simple here. All LGBTQ+ spaces should be accessible. First of all, it’s the law, so. There’s that. But also because disabled people need safe spaces to be themselves, too. They need the same opportunities to meet people, express themselves, and feel free to be whoever they are without risk of violence. A lot (not all, but a lot) of gay spaces are bars and clubs, and bars and clubs are notorious for not being accessible.
Obviously, there needs to be an accessible entrance with wide enough doorways and a ramp. But that’s not enough. The entire building needs to be accessible, too. If someone can find a table, but not a seat at the bar, or can get to the bar but not the dance floor, it’s not accessible. Every floor needs to be accessible, every bathroom, the entire establishment. Accessibility isn’t something you can pick and choose like toppings for your ice cream.
Creator #2 – Annie Segarra!
I’ve mentioned Annie Segarra on here so many times but that’s because I adore her. You’ve probably seen me in my ‘The Future is Accessible’ shirt a million times, which is their design. Annie’s videos are incredible. They cover things like ableism, sexuality, body image, and so many other important topics. As a queer, disabled, woman of color, it’s important now more than ever that her message is being heard. Buy her merch, share her content, and check out her Patreon!
Accessibility tip #2 – Have interpreters at your events
Whether it’s a pride parade or a smaller event in your local community, there needs to be interpreters available. Not providing ASL or captions for those who are Deaf or HoH is cutting a whole section out from your event, which is unacceptable. The lgbtq+ community celebrates the idea of being inclusive, and to truly be inclusive, your message needs to be shared with everyone. Have them up front and easily visible, not hidden off to the side, or behind the crowd so deaf people have to break their necks looking back and forth. Also, having a screen with captions available is a huge plus, since not all deaf/HoH people are fluent in ASL.
Creator #3 – Ryan O’connell!
Ryan O’Connell is a gay writer and actor with CP. If you haven’t already checked out his show, log in to Netflix and watch Special now. It follows a character based on Ryan and explores what life is like to be both gay and disabled. The episodes are short, but they’re hysterical. And what I love about it is that it’s not just funny for disabled people in a niche relatable way (not that that would be a bad thing), it’s just genuinely funny. Special didn’t get nearly enough promotion or love, so you should absolutely check it out and support Ryan going forward!
Accessibility tip #3 – Hire lgbtq+ disabled people
One of the easiest ways to make your business or event accessible is to hire disabled people. If you want to be inclusive for your customers, start by having an inclusive work environment. Having disabled people on your team to consult on things like accessibility will make your planning process so much easier. Think of it this way: who knows how to make an event wheelchair accessible more than someone who uses a wheelchair? Plus, if you make your business accessible for your employees, it’ll be accessible for your customers which means more money coming in for you. Everyone wins! I know I’d be more excited to spend money on a company that makes an effort for me to be included AND hires people that look like me.
Creator #4 – Aaron Philip!
Aaron is a stunning model – a black, trans, disabled model. Like, can we just take a second to celebrate that? It’s so refreshing to see someone like Aaron finally given the chance to strut down a runway because she’s absolutely gorgeous and making history for both the lgbtq+ and disabled communities. It’s about time the fashion industry recognizes that there’s more than one beautiful body type. Go follow her now and prepare to be blown away by her feed.
Accessibility tip #4 – Provide safe viewing areas at Pride
Pride parades are, for a lot of people, a big deal. It’s one of the main ways to celebrate pride and the main attractions of most festivals. Because they’re so important, every pride parade needs to have a disabled viewing area. Somewhere that people in wheelchairs can sit up front without anyone or anything blocking their view. There should also be areas for people to sit if need be, because not everyone can stand for hours or sit on the ground.
It’s also important to remember that parades, depending on the city, can last a long time. A lot of cities have their pride parades in June, but not all. My city has it in October, which is great because it’s slightly less hot. And I mean slightly. It’s usually still in the high 80s. A lot of people can’t be in the heat for very long without getting sick or passing out, so disabled viewing areas should ideally be in a shady area. The closer that area can be to bathrooms and a place to get food or water, too, the better.
I know this post is a bit late, but I hope that you’ve had an amazing June and the happiest of pride celebrations!
See you soon.