Every political issue is a disability issue and as the daughter of immigrants, I know that immigration is an important disability issue. Today I get a chance to talk with Conchita Hernandez Legorreta about her experiences as a disabled immigrant. Conchita was born in Mexico and grew up in California. She advocates for the rights of blind children and their parents in the public-school setting in the United States and abroad. Conchita is the founder and Chair of METAS which stands for Mentoring Engaging and Teaching All Students, a non-profit organization that trains educators in Latin America that work with blind, low vision students and other disabilities. She’s also a co-founder of the National Coalition of Latinx with Disabilities that seeks to amplify the voices of disabled Latinx in the disability rights movement. Currently, Conchita works as a Blind and Low Vision Specialist for the state of Maryland. For more after this episode check out another short interview I did with Conchita for the podcast about the 30th anniversary of the ADA which is episode 82a.
“What Is Public Charge?” Immigrant Legal Resource Center
“Federal Judge Blocks Trump Rule Designed To Impede Immigrants Seeking Green Cards,” Dustin Jones, NPR, November 2, 2020.
Ep 82a: Americans with Disabilities Act with Conchita Hernandez Legorreta, Disability Visibility podcast, July 26, 2020.
“Trump’s Public-Charge Rule Would Threaten Disabled Immigrants’ Health and Safety,” Rebecca Cokley and Hannah Leibson, Center for American Progress, August 8, 2018.
Maria (Conchita) Hernandez Legorreta was born in Mexico and grew up in California. She advocates for the rights of blind children and their parents in the public-school setting in the United States and abroad through a lens of intersectionality focusing on social justice. Conchita received her Bachelor’s degree from Saint Mary’s College of California, majoring in International Studies, Spanish, and History. She then went on to Louisiana Tech University where she received her Master’s in Teaching with a focus on teaching blind students. As well, Conchita earned a master’s certificate in working with Deaf-Blind students from Northern Illinois University. She is currently a Doctoral student at George Washington University pursuing a degree in Special Education. Conchita has been published in Future Reflections and Rooted in Rights. Conchita keeps up with research in special education and serves as a peer reviewer on the Journal of Blindness Innovation and Research. Conchita conducts workshops on best practices for educators and professionals in the field of disability and advocacy in the United States and internationally. Conchita worked in the rehabilitation field in Nebraska where she set up innovative programming for disabled adults. Conchita is the founder and Chair of METAS (Mentoring Engaging and Teaching All Students) a non-profit organization that trains educators in Latin America that work with blind/low vision students and other disabilities. In this role she engages lawmakers in policy discussions around people with disabilities and inclusion. Conchita is also a co-founder of the National Coalition of Latinx with Disabilities that seeks to amplify the voices of disabled Latinx in the disability rights movement. Currently, Conchita works as the Maryland Blind and Low Vision Specialist. Conchita strives to be a voice for change for educators, professionals and advocates to make full inclusion a reality for people with disabilities in Latin America.
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Geraldine Ah-Sue, Audio Producer
Alice Wong, Writer, Audio Producer, Host
Cheryl Green, Text Transcript
Lateef McLeod, Introduction
Mike Mort, Artwork
Theme Music (used with permission of artist)
Song: “Dance Off”
Artist: Wheelchair Sports Camp
“Moonglow” by Podington Bear (Moonglow by Podington Bear is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 International License.)