Deaf People of Color Conference March 29 – April 1
This FIRST OF ITS KIND conference is run by Deaf people of all racial and ethnic groups including Latino, Black, Asian, Native American, biracial, multiracial, etc. And it’s targeted at people of ALL races, ethnicities, religions, and cultural affiliations. This is a chance to learn about the struggles and strengths of Deaf people of color, how the various communities are the same, and how they are richly diverse.
And it’s not just for people of color. I’m emphasizing that point because people who are Caucasin often have a tendency to assume that workshops, lectures, and conferences ABOUT people of color are necessarily only interesting TO people of color. And that, of course, is nonsense. Events like this one can be a great chance to learn about all the different cultures that add their diverse flavors to the potpourri of the deaf/Deaf/hard of hearing community. If it helps, then don’t think of it as “educational.” Just think of it as a way to gain fascinating insights into aspects of your own, broader Deaf/deaf community that might have been invisible to you up until now.
Or perhaps you’re afraid or nervous for some reason (“I don’t want to be lectured about my supposed White privilege”; “I’m afraid people will wonder what I’m doing there”; “I don’t want to find myself surrounded by people who hate White people because of racist acts I didn’t commit!”). Relax. I’m Caucasin myself. I can’t pretend to have been to a lot of events oriented at people of color, but I’ve been to a few. And in my experience, deaf people of color have generally been very warm and welcoming toward deaf Caucasins who come with a sincere desire to LEARN.
Alas, I probably won’t be able to afford the time and cash to hop down to Indianappolis for this conference, especially given that it’s the middle of the semester for me and also would require taking a day or two off work. (It goes from the evening of Thursday, March 29 through Sunday morning April 1). But if you can fit it into your schedule, the list of workshops sound like they would be worth the trip.
If you’re traveling from close enough and if you’re frugal then you should be able to keep your entire trip budget within $500 or $600. (DISCLAIMER: I haven’t done all the math, so I won’t swear to this. But my rough estimate based on airfare from DC to Indianapolis and on conference hotel costs for two nights [Fri/Sat] brings me to about $500 before meals.) If you splurge on more nights, or a nicer room, or nice meals out, or if you have to fly across country, then obviously the cost goes up.
Check out their site at: http://www.deafpeopleofcolor.org/ Their site is tri-lingual: English, ASL, and Spanish.
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