Disability Justice: Centering Intersectionality and Liberation

January 17, 2024 6:30 pm

Town Hall Seattle, Livestream (Hybrid)

Photo of Patty Berne, a brown-skinned woman with a nude lip and perfectly arched eyebrows. They are seen clasping their hands, looking up away from the camera in a playful gaze, wearing a floral top with beaded necklaces


Patty Berne, Cofounder and Executive Artistic Director of Sins Invalid, will discuss the importance of intersectionality in disability justice and the need to address how diverse systems of oppression reinforce each other. Ms. Berne’s work creates a framework and practice of disability justice, which centers the voices and experiences of disabled people who are often marginalized and oppressed in multiple ways. 

Ms. Berne will be joining us remotely for this moderated conversation.  

The lecture will be accompanied by an ASL interpreter and will include CART captioning, both in person and on the livestream.

About the speaker

Patty Berne

Cofounder, Executive and Artistic Director of Sins Invalid

Patty Berne is the Co-Founder, Executive and Artistic Director of Sins Invalid, a disability justice-based performance project centralizing disabled artists of color and queer and gender non-conforming artists with disabilities. Berne’s experiences as a Japanese-Haitian queer disabled woman provides grounding for her work creating “liberated zones” for marginalized voices. 

Berne is widely recognized for their work to establish the framework and practice of disability justice which centers intersectionality and the ways diverse systems of oppression amplify and reinforce one another. As they explain, the disability justice framework was a reaction to the ways that the U.S. disability rights movement “invisibilized the lives of peoples who lived at intersecting junctures of oppression – disabled people of color, immigrants with disabilities, queers with disabilities, trans and gender non-conforming people with disabilities, people with disabilities who are houseless, people with disabilities who are incarcerated, people with disabilities who have had their ancestral lands stolen, amongst others.” 

Berne’s training in clinical psychology focused on trauma and healing for survivors of interpersonal and state violence. Their professional background includes advocacy for immigrants who seek asylum due to war and torture, community organizing within the Haitian diaspora, international support work for the Guatemalan democratic movement, work with incarcerated youth toward alternatives to the criminal legal system, offering mental health support to survivors of violence, and advocating for LGBTQI and disability perspectives within the field of reproductive genetic technologies. 

About the moderator

Event Accessibility

The University is committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodations, contact the UW Disability Services Office at least 10 days in advance at 206-543-6450 (voice), 206-543-6452 (TTY), 206-685-7264 (fax), or dso@uw.edu.