Not Fair

Sometimes you just have to say things simply.  I feel everybody gets acknowledgement in feminist scholarship but those with disabilities.  Further, I feel the response to my concerns, although there was some progress, could be said to be hypocritical.  This is because, notwithstanding that revisions began because of my advocacy about this issue, I cannot be completely sure this is happening.

Why?  Because the women and gender department of AU does not feel it necessary to post the announcement that they are doing this on the school website.  To be clear, I’m not saying that they’re not doing it.  I’m saying they gave themselves a loophole so it cannot become a top priority like it has been for other minority groups in recent years.

To those groups I am very happy for you that people acknowledge your pain and I simply feel left out and a nuisance, and it’s not fair.

I feel like I’m being the spoiled toddler who pulled my hair because I was using a walker and getting the attention when he was over.  I don’t mean to be like this but I just wanted a turn to be seen as a dynamic being with empowering stories.  To be told, “Yes, I’m sorry there’s been a mistake.  It was our problem.  Thank you for trying to ask the student union to get funding for a critical disability theory expect as that is what we need to get more courses, and perhaps a degree program in this area, but we have it under control and here’s how”.  I received the last part but it was without the plan of action, really, and then they closed the file.

Yes, it’s a success that they actually see me as a nuisance and not someone easily deterred by vague promises and reassurances.  It is a success that because of my paper revision is taking place.  And it’s nothing to sneeze at, but I still feel sick and tired of being presented as sick and tired in course material.  Then, when I try to mention something to the very people who say that typecasting someone is discriminatory, they tell me to F off—in a professional-like manner, of course.  And then I find myself going over how in 1991 lesbianism was unfairly invisible in one of my classes.  And for those who dealt with this, you’re right it is unfair, but unfortunately, it’s still happening in 2023 in Athabasca University.  Except this time it’s disability.

I know I’m just one person so I understand I can’t ask for the apology, but an announcement would be nice.  Isn’t this such an announcement?  In a way.

However, for me, a public announcement would mean accountability.  I am joining a council meeting in August where this issue will be brought forward as how we can determine the steps we can take collectively as fellow students.

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