In this oral history interview, Gary Gray describes his experience as an African American man with cerebral palsy during the 504 protests in 1977. During the protests, Gray was a student at the University of Southern Illinois in Carbondale, Illinois. He did not participate directly in the 504 Sit-in, but he discusses following coverage, sometimes biased, of the event. He specifically addresses how people of color had been "fighting for 504 way before the political movement even began...because [they] had to fight for [their] right, right from the beginning" as a group further marginalized from an already existing minority. He notes that one shortcoming of the 504 protests was their continued failure to include people of color in leadership. He also discusses participating in a later protest for accessible public transit in San Francisco, recalling how long it took the police to arrest protesters because they had no way to transport people in wheelchairs.
In this oral history interview, Disability and Civil Rights activist Ron Washington discusses his experience in the 504 protests, as well as how those events intersected with the interests of the Civil Rights Movement. Washington discusses prejudices held in different activist communities, and efforts that were made to further Civil Rights collectively.
In this oral history interview, Disability Rights activist Karen Parker discusses her involvement in the 1977 Section 504 protests. She focuses on the day-to-day life aspects of the protests, such as food, entertainment, and drug use. She recalls being particularly impressed by the support of other community groups, such as the Black Panthers and unions.
In this oral history interview, legal expert and scholar Arlene Mayerson describes the impact that the 504 protests and activist representations of people with disabilities had on her as a law student. She also discusses the legal history of disability legislation, including the ADA, the Civil Rights Act, Title IX, and the Rehab Act.
In this oral history interview, Congressman George Miller discusses how he and Congressman John Burton presided over the Section 504 hearings held in the San Francisco Federal Building during the 1977 Sit-in.
In this oral history interview, deaf protester Joanne Jauregui discusses her participation in the 504 protests. Working as a teacher in a deaf school, and a full-time mother, she came to the Federal Building for a few hours each evening after work. She notes the specific place of deaf protesters within the movement, and the separation they felt from organizers due to language barriers. She recalls one specific meeting with a congressman who was deeply moved by individual pleas of why 504 mattered to different people.
In this oral history interview, Didi Roberts recounts what it was like to be in the Bay Area shortly after the 504 protests, her role in the disability rights movement, and her experiences as a disabled woman of color.
In this oral history interview, Judy Brady talks about her experience on the picket lines during the 504 protest. She remembers the camaraderie felt with other protesters she saw day after day, and how the San Francisco community came together to support the protests.
In this oral history interview, Judy Heumann talks about her experience on the picket lines during the 504 protest. She remembers the camaraderie felt with other protesters she saw day after day, and how the San Francisco community came together to support the protests.
In this oral history interview, protester and nondisabled ally Joan Leon talks about her involvement in the 1977 504 Protest. She became involved in the protests while working for the state on the Rehabilitation Act, where she met Ed Roberts. Later, while working at the Center for Independent Living (CIL), she discusses working with Ed Roberts and Judy Heumann and specifically details how she watched Judy develop into a leader during the protest. She also talks about the occasional tension of her role as an able-bodied supporter, noting specifically that she would not stand on the front-lines of protests, because she was not disabled.
In this oral history interview, activist Barry Ryan details his experience as a participant in the 504 Occupation in 1977 while he was working for the Center for Independent Living (CIL). He includes accounts of his daily activities and responsibilities during the protest. He also discusses growing-up with a disability and his move to California, and issues a call to action for people with disabilities to continue to fight for equal employment rights.
In this oral history interview, nondisabled ally Beverly Bertaina talks about her week-long participation in the 504 Occupation with her four year old son Adam. Adam was diagnosed with developmental disabilities and cerebral palsy and was brought into the building with his mother. She discusses her individual responsibilities during the protest working in the kitchen, the dynamic between able-bodied and disabled protesters, and her involvement in activism as the parent of a disabled child both before and after the protest.
In this oral history interview, protester Bill Johnson discusses his responsibilities during the 26 days he spent participating in the 504 Sit-in. He also discusses making the decision to stay for the Sit-in, despite losing his job as a consequence. He also discusses fears of a bomb threat on the building.
In this oral history interview, protester Bill Palmer talks about his involvement in the 504 Sit-in. After returning from the Vietnam War, Bill became a disabled transit driver, and he discusses transporting protesters and supplies in and out of the Federal Building, and how this led to his own involvement in the protest.
In this oral history interview, protester Bonnie Regina discusses her participation and daily life in the 26 days of the 504 Sit-in. She also discusses the supporters, such as the Black Panthers, and the role of the media.
In this oral history interview, activist Bruce Oka details his experience as a participant in the 504 Occupation in 1977 as well as his later work with city and state government and Municipal Transportation Agency (MTA). He shares his memories of daily life, including the trip to Washington D.C. He also discusses the opportunities he had to speak to the press during the protest, and speaks to what has and hasn't changed post-504.
In this oral history interview, activist Deborah (Norling) Armstrong discusses her involvement in the 504 Sit-in as a blind protester. She specifically discusses her role in enforcing Section 504 regulations after the Act passed while she was a student at UC Berkeley.
In this oral history interview, activist Dennis Billups details his experience as a participant in the 504 Occupation in 1977. He served as "chief morale officer" and recollects some 504 chants. He shares his memories of daily life, including the trip to Washington D.C., and discusses his frustration being excluded from certain key moments in the protest and whether that is tied to being a person of color. He speaks to what has and hasn't changed post-504.
In this oral history interview, Disability Rights Activist Eddie Jauregui recalls his involvement in the 504 Sit-in as a deaf protester. He notes tensions between the Deaf community and other organizers due to language barriers.
In this oral history interview, protester HolLynn D'Lil discusses her participation in the 504 Sit-in. Holynn helped document the events by taking over 300 pictures both in San Francisco and once the protesters traveled to Washington D.C. She cites the 504 protests as pushing her towards an interest in civil rights and disability activism, and still works as a disability activist today.
In this oral history interview, protester Jim Engvall reflects on the 26 days he spent occupying the San Francisco Federal Building. He notes that people were not really expecting to be there for that length of time, and he credits this Sit-in as introducing him to having a voice in the disability activist community.
In this oral history interview, activist Kitty Cone details her experience as a participant in the 504 Occupation in 1977, where she was widely considered one of the lead organizers. She shares memories of all aspects of the protest, including the trip to Washington D.C, the press coverage, the community partners, and more.
In this oral history interview, Disability Rights activist Mary Lou Breslin discusses her involvement in the Section 504 Occupation. She discusses the uncertainty in the early days of the Protest once occupiers realized that they did not know how long the sit-in would last, specifically with concerns for medication and supplies. After the success of the protests, Mary Lou worked for 504 compliance. While she praises the leaders of the movement for their success, she also notes that leadership was 'white women in wheelchairs' and not very diverse.
In this oral history interview, protesters Ray and Connie (Soucy) Uzeta, who fell in love as a result of their involvement in the 504 protests, discuss their involvement in the 504 Sit-in. The pair, now married, met at the Sit-in and have continued careers in disability activism since. As Director of the Center for Independent Living in San Francisco at the time, Ray explains the initial goals for Section 504 regulations, and that no one anticipated the duration of the Sit-in. During the protest, Connie coordinated the medical team, including medical care, medications, and much needed shower equipment. They recall "some of the best parties [they've] ever had," as well as the diversity among the protesters. Both continued involvement as disability activists after the protest and encourage young people to keep fighting.
In this oral history interview, Disability activist Anthony Tusler talks about his experience picketing outside the 504 protests in support, and taking pictures of the event. He also discusses the impact of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and how it relates to Section 504.
In this oral history interview, Herb Levine discusses how he helped sneak both supplies and protesters in and out of the Federal building during the 1977 Occupation.
In this oral history interview, ally Joe Quinn talks about his role as an interpreter during the 504 protests. He discusses how other interpreters organized and communicated once they decided to go inside the building, and notes that there has always been a distinct 'cleave' between the deaf community and greater disabled community due to language barriers. He mentions that the deaf community had some distinct, unique goals for 504 that were often excluded. He also includes his personal revelations about sexuality as he bonded with Queer protesters while he was in the 'coming-out' process.
In this oral history interview, journalist and newscaster Evan White discusses his experience covering the 504 Sit-in in San Francisco. He notes how the protest organizers communicated with the media as a strategy, and how media coverage affected the success of the protest. He also traveled with a select group of protesters to Washington D.C., and discusses the experiences of transporting protesters around the city in a moving van as their only accessible vehicle option, meeting Joe Califano, and waiting for President Jimmy Carter outside of church.
In this oral history interview, Swami Suddhananda describes her experience as a 504 protester, and the social and emotional impact that participating in the movement had.
In this oral history interview, disability activist ally Ken Stein recalls his involvement in the 504 protests. Working for the Center for Independent Living (CIL) at the time, he primarily picketed outside the Federal Building during the protests, and was able to periodically enter inside to bring news to protesters. He specifically talks about his important role of taping news coverage of the protests from local broadcasts. He also talks about the importance of 504 in making disability a civil rights issue for the first time, as opposed to a medical one. He calls the Bay Area a "mecca for people with disabilities" and discusses the circumstantial time and place that allowed the protests to thrive.