Event attendees and speaker
Hidden disability advocate and speaker Christina Irene came to Hostos on April 11 to promote awareness, understanding and the destigmatization of invisible disabilities.

Invisible disabilities are conditions that are not immediately apparent to others but significantly limit one’s day-to-day activities. Such conditions include physical pain, fatigue, cognitive difficulties, mental health disorders, learning differences, and more.

During her talk, Irene used interactive games and shared the experiences and successes of people living with invisible disabilities—such as fibromyalgia, depression and Crohn’s disease—to provide insight and promote understanding. She also identified and debunked common stigmas concerning invisible disabilities, shared coping skills and tips for mastering people first language when talking with or about people with disabilities, and addressed how people who do not have an invisible disability can be better allies to those who do.

The event was organized by the executive board members of the CUNY Coalition for Students with Disabilities club at Hostos (CCSD @Hostos), the Hostos Accessibility Resource Center (ARC), with the support of the Division of Student Development and Enrollment Management (SDEM).

Student and president of the CCSD @Hostos Stephanie Cabán-González said she hoped Irene’s presentation would have a positive impact on the Hostos community and beyond. “I want people to walk away feeling empowered knowing that if they do have a disability, it does not mean they cannot strive for what they want,” she shared.

For general questions about or for the CCSD @Hostos, email ccsdhostos@gmail.com.

For information about ARC, go here.