Gabe Cazares is a proud Texan, a queer, disabled Latin x, and a self-described policy wonk. Gabe is currently part of Mayor Sylvester Turner’s executive team as Director of the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities in the City of Houston. In this capacity, Gabe oversees the accessible and timely delivery of city services, programs, and activities for over 215,000 Houstonians with Disabilities. Gabe is committed to disability, LGBTQIA, and immigrant justice work. He is particularly drawn to intersectional movements that center the voices of queer, disabled, and immigrant people of color.
What does Pride mean to you?
When I think of pride, I think of freedom. Black and Brown trans women sparked a movement at the Stonewall Inn that could not be stopped, and because of their work we now enjoy rights they could only dream about. But we cannot forget that none of us are free until all of us are free, and we can’t ignore those of us who live at the intersection of multiple marginalized identities
What inspires you about the LGBTQIA+ community?
Our resilience. Covid-19 has forced most people to realize just how interdependent we all are, but LGTBQIA people already knew that. In the absence of many of our biological families, we have built systems to support and care for one another.
How would you like white folks to show up for Black and brown folks during these times?
Your Twitter advocacy is not enough. If your wokeness is only reflected on your social media timelines, what are you doing? What are you doing on a daily basis to exam your privilege, the ways you benefit from White supremacy, and what steps are you taking to dismantle those systems of oppression? Support black and brown people by listening to us, hiring us, paying us for our work.
Is there anything you’d like to promote?
My disability, my queerness, and my lived experience are interlinked. Our LGBTQIA community has work to do to recognize that disabled queer people exist, and to make our queer spaces welcoming and accessible to us.
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