Stacey Milbern, a Warrior for Disability Justice, Dies at 33
Master of science. Milbern, who recognized as singular, called out the mainstream impairment movement for marginalizing individuals in color and nontraditional gender details.
A few years back, Stacey Park Milbern had a issue. She was trying to obtain someplace in her wheelchair, yet there was one step 4 or five inches high. Wishing to improvise a ramp, the girl asked herself, “What do We have that fits that exact size? ”
“I used my personal two tennis shoes to fill up the gap, ” she stated, and she was able to conquer the step.
She informed that story within a 2017 interview with the online network Disability Visibility Project to demonstrate something she had learned regarding herself while others with disabilities: They will are resourceful.
Milbern, who experienced muscular dystrophy. “So we obtain to be really innovative issue solvers and, I believe, aren’t limited to boxes. ”
That creativity was on display in Mar, when she and a few friends who had formed a good group called the Disability Proper rights Culture Club began helping destitute individuals in the Bay Region who had no resources to safeguard themselves against the new coronavirus.
Exercising of Ms. Milbern’s house in East Oakland, they produced homemade kits that included face masks, vitamins, gloves and mix-it-yourself hands sanitizer, and distributed them in homeless encampments.
“Oftentimes, disabled people have solutions that society requires, ” Ms. Milbern told the Bay area public radio station KQED.
She was making those packages even as she was dealing with some substantial health issues, the girl told KQED. Two months later on there were problems during a good surgery, and she died upon May 19 at a medical center in Stanford, Calif., her good friend Andraéa LaVant said. It was first her 33rd birthday.
Through her organizing, writing and speaking, Master of science. Milbern was a prominent and widely respected figure in the system known as the impairment justice movement, inside the Bay Region and beyond. Since her loss of life, friends and admirers have published tributes on social networking under the hashtag #StaceyTaughtUs. Some posts point out a book she recommended, other folks the significance of self-worth or perhaps cooperation or thinking big.
The fact that last quality was something qualified firsthand by Jim LeBrecht, who also with Nicole Newnham directed the recent Netflix documentary “Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution. ” Master of science. Milbern, along with Ms. LaVant, a new campaign to broaden the impact from the film.
“Here’s the stage, ” he said. “She might develop ideas for our effect campaign that seemed outlandishly past imagination or possibility, and after that pull it off in marvelous fashion. ”
Stacey Park Milbern was born on May nineteen, 1987, in Seoul, South Korea. Her father, Joel, was on the United States Army, and her mother, Jean (Park) Milbern, was self-employed.
Ms. Milbern was first mixed-race — her father was first white and her mother Korean language — and recognized as singular. She wore those labels with pride and good humor.
In a good 2015 interview with her good friend Dolores Tejada, she recalled a great incident from fourth grade the fact that first underscored for her the fact that she was different. She nonetheless walked during the time, though unsteadily, and had fallen within a booth in the girls’ bathroom. 3 classmates came in, and because she sat on the ground puzzling over ways to obtain backup, she heard them chattering about frivolous stuff — “boys and bras and all in these girl things, ” the girl said.
Or I’m from another world. We have a totally diverse reality. ”
Her disability consciousness grew from there, as do her activism. She served upon several commissions in North Carolina and pushed to obtain disability background added to the senior high school program. And she started writing poems and weblog posts on impairment rights. She assailed Jerry Lewis’s yearly telethon for muscular dystrophy as promoting a pity-based look at of disabilities. She called away the mainstream disability movement intended for marginalizing individuals of color and nontraditional gender identities.
Ms. Milbern received a bachelor’s degree in Methodist University in 2009. The girl lived at home until age group 24, when she moved to the Bay Area to are located on her own. In 2015 she earned a master in business administration degree at Generators College in Oakland.
Among her areas of concern was skilled care for people with disabilities — not only securing it, yet examining doctors’ bias. She talked out about unnecessary surgery, some thing she thought she was exposed to when younger.
When Pacific Gas and Electric, the California utility, close down capacity to thousands in households last year as this attempted to cope with wildfires, she helped organize a mutual-assistance effort called Capacity to Are located to distribute generators and normally make sure that those who also needed electricity for a ventilator or other medical devices had been not cut off.
Shortly prior to her death, she posted a good YouTube video expressing concern the fact that individuals like her who make use of ventilators might be in danger in having their equipment removed during the coronavirus crisis, and the fact that people with disabilities would not get equal entry to care if they will got the virus.
In addition to her parents, Ms. Milbern is survived by a sibling, Jessica Milbern; a brother, Bob; and her grandmothers, Beulah Milbern and Kim Kwee Rae.
Inside the 2017 interview, Ms. Milbern talked about her hopes for the future.