Glitched photograph of white nonbinary person whose head, shoulders and right arm are viewed from multiple perspectives. Rectangular patches are rendered in vivid and distorted colours, covered by horizontal lines, repeated, rotated and displaced. Horizontal bands of multi-coloured noise appear near the bottom and top of the image.
Hypnagogia. Digital glitch collage by the author.

When we think about accessibility, we tend to do so in terms of spaces. The first, and sometimes the only, question we ask is: can people get into this space and move around it? …

CW: weight loss mention, weight number, exercise, medical neglect

Long description: Photo of Alex sitting on their sofa beside Saffi, a small brown hound. Alex is wearing a black tank top with a mock turtleneck, black pleather leggings, heavy black eyeglasses and dark red lipstick. They are smiling slightly and resting their right hand on their left knee, which is bent up toward their chest. They have their left arm around Saffi who is sitting upright and looking seriously at the camera.

Technically this is about a week late but since I haven’t figured out how to hack my experience of time to work like a normal human’s, it’ll have to do. …

Pale gray handwritten-style font against dark gray background. Text reads, “WITH not FOR”. The word “not” is underlined with a swooping curve.

How do you create a new paradigm?

Changing the way designers engage with disability is a design problem in itself. How do you get from recognizing an opportunity to create organizational change to actually making that change happen? After all, you’re just one person. You’re working with a limited budget…

Dark gray text against a background of organic-looking mint green and white shapes. A heading in serif font says, “#DesigningWITHDisability New Year’s Resolutions”. Below is a bulleted list with four items. The first three items, with tick mark bullets, say “Speculate through disability”, “Embrace crip time”, and “Choose knowledgeable fearlessness”. The fourth item, with an open square bullet, says, “Stop making checklists”.

As a disability-led self-advocacy organization working to create new paradigms of design through situated knowledge, the questions we most often find ourselves answering are questions asking “how?”

How can we include disabled people’s perspectives?

How do we talk about disabled people without being harmful?

How do we make our events…

I was looking through some PhD studentship listings this morning, when one in particular stopped me in my tracks. It offers an interdisciplinary programme in public health research and decision-making, is based in the UK, and is open to international students. …

There was a useful discussion on Facebook earlier this evening about how disabled folks use the word ‘triggered’, so I’m going to talk a bit here about my own usage of it, and why content warnings can improve open discourse.

Using ‘triggered’ inclusively

The use of ‘trigger’ as a psychological…

Dear Abled people,

When a Disabled person talks about their experience(s) of benevolent ableism and you reply, “they were just trying to be nice” and we say “don’t do that” -

That is not us picking on you. That is you being an asshole, and us saying “don’t be an asshole.”

When we explain to you why saying that is at best unhelpful, and at worst harmful, that is not us ‘thinking we’re perfect’. That is us acknowledging that you have been taught to be an asshole, by a culture rooted in assholery, and spending our valuable time & limited energy to try and help you to become less of an asshole.

So stop being such an asshole, and listen.


A still-irritated crip

The Canadian Houses of Parliament, viewed from the back. The buildings are lit brightly by the sun, but the sky behind them has partial cloud cover. Credit: Taxiarchos228 at the German language Wikipedia.

It is beyond time for us to have a discussion about the history and status of disability rights activism and related policy-making in Canada.

I’m going to preface this by noting that I was born in Canada and grew up in Canada. I lived in Germany for 3 months after…

Our physical needs and limits are not the same as yours. [Image: fat white nonbinary person with short blonde hair, lying with their head on a white pillow, looking exhausted.]

Abled people, when a disabled person agrees to do something for, or with you, please realise they are agreeing to something specific and finite.

They have assessed whatever chore or errand or leisure activity is on the table, evaluated it against their energy levels, needs and abilities, and decided whether…

Image of a white femme-presenting nonbinary person with medium length reddish blonde hair looking off to their right side. The lighting is Baroque and half of their face is hidden in darkness. The image is blurry, as though the camera caught them in motion, or perhaps they don’t quite really exist.

The topic of identity labels is something I’ve been mulling for a couple of weeks, ever since a Normal acquaintance commented on one of my Facebook posts about intersectionality, asking that ‘we’ “stop attacking generalities”, and suggesting that “beings are best approached by their qualities, not how they are qualified.”…

Alex Haagaard

Disability-led design & health justice. Director of Communications for The Disabled List. They / theirs. Tip jar:

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