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Celebrating LGBTQ+ Pride Month

Published by Kassi Soulard on

This is a special post written by Charles Warren, Curriculum Developer at Triangle. Charlie is also a member of Triangle’s Racial Equity Task Force. As part of our commitment to the work of our Racial Equity Task Force, we will be sharing more information with you on subjects related to racial equity and disability justice. This post continues our series dedicated to calling attention to the contributions of people with disabilities to American history.

Happy June! This month, Triangle’s Racial Equity Task Force (RETF) will submit posts featuring LGBTQ+ Pride Month, Caribbean American Heritage Month, and African American Music Month. The RETF’s posts will honor intersectionality and highlight people of color with disabilities whose lives cross over multiple identities and issues ALL at the same time. Our first post spotlights LGBTQ+ Pride Month.

Chella Man

Chella Man faces directly toward us against a light blue background. He poses with his arms resting on his knee.  A thin line tattoo stretches from his wrist to his biceps. He is wearing red pants, thin matching suspenders, a short sleeve lavender sweater, and a silver star of David on a think silver chain. He has cochlear implants on both ears.

Chella Man is an Asian American actor, model, artist, YouTuber, and LGBTQ activist.  In a 2018 interview with Teen Vogue, he observed, “There is an extreme lack of representation for young Deaf, queer, Jewish, Asian transgender artists, so I decided to be my own representation.” Chella has been creating his own representation since 2017, when he started a YouTube channel, uploading videos about his experience with gender dysphoria, his identity and life, as well as American Sign Language covers of popular songs. In 2019, Chella entered the DC Universe playing Jericho on Titans. Chella is a multidisciplinary artist who makes paintings, designs tattoos, and collaborates on hearing aid-inspired jewelry.

Imani Barbarin

Imani Barbarin, a Black woman wearing a pink top and pearls, poses with her gazes focused ahead out of frame. She is smiling, her hear is in short braids, and she is wearing pink eye shadow to match her outfit Photo credit: Maude Ballinger

In 2014, Imani Barbarin launched Crutches and Spice, a website created as a space to share her experiences as a queer disabled Black woman, along with a podcast by the same name.  She is known as a speaker who uses her voice and social media platforms to facilitate important conversations in the disability community. Her writing has appeared in Bustle, Cosmopolitan, Forbes, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Refinery29, and Rewire News Group.  She has spoken at numerous colleges and universities throughout the US.  In 2020, Imani hosted Vote for Access, a podcast investigating the difficulties of voting while disabled.  She is represented by Collective Speakers, a speaker’s bureau that has a roster of thought leaders, activists, and trailblazers.  

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