Create Space for Equity Series

The "How to Create Space for Equity" series was born out of the desire to create conversation. We want to learn from other organizations who face oppression and inequity, and see how that intersects with audism and ableism. Learning and growing from these parallels are imperative to overcome barriers in our community.

This conversation is provided in American Sign Language and in English.

If your organization is interested in working with Adjacent Space please email us at info@adjacentspace.org

Iron City Social - October 26, 2021

This event spotlights Iron City Social -- a marketing business that supports, empowers, and educates small to medium-size businesses in the Southeast.

 

To learn more about Iron City Social: https://www.ironcitysocial.com/

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT 

Hello. Hello everyone. I hope you're all doing very well tonight. We are thrilled to have this event and my name is Beth over land and I am part of the adjacent space team. We are so proud to host tonight’s event. This is a community partnership with iron city social. They are a Birmingham’s about that specializes in marketing and branding. So thank you everyone for being here. Our aim is to share different ways that you can advocate for yourself and your loved ones of course. Tonight we're going to be focusing on social media accessibility and equity. How to create space for equity. How to create a space that shows your culture and your identity. So it is my pleasure to welcome a fab fabulous person miss Kayla Stinnett. We are thrilled to hear what she has to offer so take it away.
>>SPEAKER: I'm actually going to take it away. I am Amy Jones and I am tonight’s MC for this event. It's an hon to have Kayla with us. We're looking for ways to make our city more accessible and to do that Kaylas name is one that everyone needs to know. She will help make businesses more accessible and inclusive for all of us in Birmingham. At adjacent space we believe that we all deserve equal access and participation in the places where we live, work, and play. How do we accomplish that? It's not just a list that you can check off. It's a commitment. And that conversation is a great way to continue to push for transformative changes that benefit everyone. Thank you, Kayla, for joining us tonight. What should people know first about you and yours about?
>>SPEAKER: Thank you so much for that great introduction Amy. And good evening everyone. I am Kayla Stinnett and I am the founder CEO and head marketing haven of iron city social. Iron city social is a marketing farm based in Birmingham Alabama and we focus on impowering supporting and educating small businesses. We work with a plethora of clients throughout the southeast including some great businesses right here in Birmingham like bread Birmingham, brewing company and wild honey flower truck just to name a few. And I am very excited to chat with all of you tonight about access accessibility, equity, and inclusion when it comes to social media marketing.
>>SPEAKER: Awesome. Thank you so much for that. We have some pre-existing question that we're going to go ahead and chat with you about. We want this just to be a conversation. And then after that we will see if there are any questions from our audience. Does that sound good?
>>SPEAKER: Sounds great.
>>SPEAKER: Awesome. So let's start at the very beginning. How did iron city social come about? What's your background?
>>SPEAKER: Well I actually I do have a degree in marketing economics and entrepreneurship. After I graduated college I tried to few different forms of market levels ofs about from working for like one of the the largest corporations here in Birmingham to working for a mom and pop shop in Hoover. What I found was that I needed to create my own space for myself and for women of color in a sis male dominated industry. So that's when iron city social came to life.
>>SPEAKER: Okay that makes sense. So when you are thinking about social media one of the biggest things that comes up I think is language and the kind of language that we use on social media, we have gotten to a point where we need to really think through what we are putting out there. How do you think we can make language more equitable on social media?
>>SPEAKER: I don't think people realize how power powerful words can be. Especially people outside of marketing. I'm trained like this marketing is my passion. Words are my passion. Invoking feelings and change is my passion. So when it comes to marketing I think it's very important to realize the power of the esthetic and to be quite honest just the language that you're putting out there. I know especially throughout COVID there was a shift to where we leaned really hard into social media because we needed that community and I think market marketing throughout COVID is a perfect example of how language can become more equitable when it comes to social media because you have to think of all the not only passion but the struggle that was shared throughout COVID. From friend to friend, brand to consumer, less bells and whistles less perfection and people crave that'd real content because they didn't want to feel bad about themselves. They didn't want to feel like they had to change to meet some impossible standard. Instead they wanted to feel community and love that they could not get because of shelter in place. So I believe when it comes to creating more equitable marketing it's about keeping not only your language but the esthetic the look that you're putting out there as authentic as possible.
>>SPEAKER: Can you give some maybe a real world example of what you're talking about?
>>SPEAKER: So maybe more so on the extreme end that does sit a little bit outside of social media but still was a very relevant conversation was a add that came out during COVID for post part um recovery and instead of it being a new mother running through a field of flowers conquering mother hood being gorgeous doing it effortlessly they showed a real woman recovering from giving birth to her child and while she may love that child and she may find so much joy in being a mother it's hard, it's difficult there's a lot of ugly things that happen that aren't really discussed and I thought it was very brave for that add to be created and dispersed like it was because while I am not a mother I can certainly appreciate that struggle and I can attest that I had no idea that it was such a struggle and I would never have known that if I hadn't seen an advertisement like that. So that's definitely a great example. Another exam would be in the craft beer industry and this specifically took place on social media there was a call to action for companies to take stock of how they treated female women in the craft beer industry. Tons of testimony and stories came out from women in craft beer and without, without really asking craft breweries to step up and do anything they did. Even company that didn't necessarily have any allegations brought towards them they still stepped up and apologized for any complacency that they had had in this repeated sexism and abuse happening to women in craft beer and I think that just goes to show you how much of a shift we've seen on social media and how powerful a tool it can be to create action to create change to gift a for from free flowing conversation.
>>SPEAKER: I think that what you said is extremely relevant and really resonates. I know that I'm a mom of two and when I had my first I went through post part um depression and it was really really hard . And it was something that I had never even consider considered as a possibility. And so an add like that especially during a time like COVID I think can really do a lot to make you feel less alone.
>>SPEAKER: Exactly.
>>SPEAKER: Awesome. So tell me what you're seeing since black lives matter since the protest and the movement how are you seeing social media shift to kind of, are you seeing a shift that goes with the attitude of today?
>>SPEAKER: It's different not only in the platform that you look at but also the different sides. Like the creator side of things and the actual consumer side of things. In terms of Instagram there definite definite definitely has been a shift with lifting up black creators, brands dispersing more content that is inclusive and encouraging the black and the the brown community to feel more seen and feel like they are more so a part of the conversation. Now on the flip side of that sometimes for example with the black squares that came out where they blacked out social media for a day a lot of brands did that and just to name Birmingham specifically I believe the organization that's called elevators called people out on it. They contacted to my knowledge every singles about in Birmingham that voiced support in terms of the black lives matter movement and not only noted what they said they would do to encourage change within their company but also followed up. Not only three to six months later but eve an year late door see if they actually stood behind what they said and I believe you can actually go to their website and see that information live as well. So from the consumer company side definitely seen a shift in the right direction. But of course there's still plenty of work to do. Now when it comes to creators specifically on platforms like Tik tok there's still so much to be done. There is a big back lash right now of white creators feeling black and brown creators’ content and creating it as they don't necessarily claim it as their own but they don't give them credit the. So there has been a big and very well founded up roar on that platform because not only are these huge influencers on Tik tok using that content without crediting the source but brands like old navy I think mick lobe ultra r are taking that content that they've created and not like bear minimum should credit them but don't give them any kind of payment or anything for that and they use it and they have successful campaigns because of that. So there's certainly a lot of work to be done especially since new platforms pop up every single day. But I am certainly encouraged by the shift that I've seen and the conversation that I've been able to have with my clients about how they can support the BLM movement.
>>SPEAKER: Okay awesome. So coming from a deaf community background and kind of thinking through that you know what you were saying a lot of that sounded sounded like kind of watching out for performative stuff rather than actual you know actual advocacy and I feel like that is something that we see a lot. You might see a hearing person who takes it upon them selves to learn a few phrases in sign language and you will see this person be just whoa that's the coolest thing and and it's like well that's an entire language and an entire community of people. So I think that's a parallel that we see a lot with cultural appropriation.
>>SPEAKER: Yes. I always say it costs next to nothing to be empathetic really make people feel like they are seen in your marketing. For example with the the brewing company before I started working with them there was no, I could not see myself in their marketing. I could pull out their Instagram and look at their feed and be like that's a place I could see myself going to because I didn't see my myself. And that's not only with black women, my partner has a form of albinism that affects his vision so he's legally blind and there are certain things not only with their marketing but the experience that they depict when you come into the tap room and making certain, just making people feel more comfortable. Like me seeing myself in their marketing and my partner being able to walk into the the tap room and ask for a large format menu so he doesn't have to ask the bartender or me to read off the menu to him. It's like small things like that that come from having conversations like this and being open and listening and not necessarily talking talking. That's the major piece that's not only miss missing with a lot of businesses marketing but also just this about in general.
>>SPEAKER: Awesome that make as lot of sense and it's interesting because I'm a member of the deaf community, I am a woman, and in some ways I find my myself having to kind of battle against that glass ceiling but in other ways there's things that I have never considered like what you just said about a large print menu. That's not something that I've ever really thought about. I would love to know your insights on since you, since your partner does deal with that can you tell us about his, I'm sorry your partners accessibility for social media.
>>SPEAKER: My partner does not care for social media at all. We actually had a funny conversation today as I was looking at my phone and answering e-mails I said I'm so tired of looking at my phone today and he said I averaged two hours on my phone last week. I'm like that's awesome for you I spend ten hour as day on my phone probably but going outside of his, his accessibility just in general there are several things that brands can do to make their social media more accessible. Adding descriptions of the pictures that you're using in posts. Captioning posts. Adding meta tags or descriptions to the photos themselves like saving them as a description of the photo itself. And I know as someone who works in social media every single day I definitely know that halting things like that to your plate may be impossible. Which is why I definitely recommend work one thing in at a time. Like what we're focused on at iron city social right now is actively adding captions to all of our posts or not posts but videos as well as vetting our website for it's accessibility. From meta descriptions for our photos to how is our text the easily legible on our website. So there's a thousand different things you can do. But don't feel overwhelmed by it. Start small, work in a thing or two a month and just build upon that.
>>SPEAKER: That's awesome. Would you have a particular website or resource that someone could take a look at in order to start working on their accessibility or even go back and say I've worked on this what am I missing.
>>SPEAKER: Yeah I think later.com is their blog is a fantastic resource for accessibility features. Not only do they specifically discuss how to make things more or social media in general more accessible but they also go very in depth on different features or new features that platforms come out with. For example captioning. Especially when it came to story stories or videos or things like that were very difficult. But now that Instagram has released their precaptioning tool anyone can do it. Anybody can do it. So there's literally no reason that you should not be adding those captions to your videos. So subscribe doing later.coms blog I think is a great place to start. And from there it really just begs a conversation with your audience and paying attention to your customer base and what they're asking for in terms of need. For accessibility.
>>SPEAKER: Just taking a second to write down later later.com blog. So I can make sure that I also subscribe to that. Thank you for that. That's really really helpful. Let me see. We have a really great comment if you don't mind me bringing that in we have someone named Desiree who said that sometimes she feels like she doesn't want to visit a place or support as about that is not deaf inclusive. She has struggled, she has actually reached out to creators influencers in the past to ask them to add captions and they've actually refused so she's chosen to unfollow those people. Obviously there's not much you can do about someone else but would you have any other tips for bringing that advocating for yourself in that kind of space.
>>SPEAKER: I think especially with the creators that I follow if someone were to reach out like that with a comment they would not only make that change but they would also call themselves out for it. To make their audience aware of it. And I think the comment from that creator just goes more into the toxic nature of social media. Because while especially throughout COVID we found so much community in social media and solved so much great change there's still a dark side to that. So while I'm very sorry that you had that experience with that creator but for that create they're are a dozen more out there who would welcome that feedback and actively work it into their content because at the over day their audience their audience is not only their bread and butter but that's their family. That's the community that they've chosen that's the family they've chosen. So I think when you find a creator that is truly passionate the about what they do and wants to create an inclusive atmosphere for all of their audience then that's who you want to follow that's who you want to support.
>>SPEAKER: I completely agree with that. I think that that's an excellent point. do you feel like and this might be a little bit I don't know might be a little bit of an edgy question to ask. But do you think that captions are kind of a trend right now and if it is that's fine, that doesn't bother me but we're interest today hear your thoughts on that because it does feel like it kind of blown up.
>>SPEAKER: I don't think it's necessarily a trend. I think it goes into the fact that a lot of creators and just businesses and people in general were noticing that they need today make their content more accessible. It was much more difficult before Instagram came out with this caption feature because you would have to go through and either type out your captions or pay for your captions to be added but honestly I think what really blue it up was Instagram making that move and adding that precaptioned service and Facebook does the same thing when you upload a video as well. But Instagram goes as far as to allow you to save the video after you add the captions so you can disperse it to other platforms if you choose so yeah it made it much more accessible for everyone to do . It made it easier it made it less expensive. So it's really a matter of why wouldn't you use it if this tool was there.
>>SPEAKER: Very cool. So what do you think needs to be improved on social media in order to allow more divergent voices to be seen and heard.
>>SPEAKER: I think we need to keep having conversations like this. I know that we need to lift up creators that not only create content that's more equitable and accessible but creators that need things like this. You know whey mean. People that are deaf, people that are blind. People with disabilities in general they need to be seen because it's a lot easier to have these conversations and authentic honestly when people that were creating these things are a part of the conversation. I think that's where companies get it wrong. And that's where the social media powers have gotten it wrong is they're not making everyone a part of the conversation. And it's not difficult. You just have to ask and sit back and listen and then put that into action.
>>SPEAKER: Well it's kind of like Hamilton you know know. You have to be in the the room where it happens and so many times the the the people that need, the people that are having a hard time being heard are the the people that are not in the room. And when you have to depend on someone in the room to speak up for you you certainly can't always count on that. So to that point how would you encourage people to start creating. Say someone a deaf person a blind person whoever actually wants to become a creator where should they start?
>>SPEAKER: The great news is that it's easier now than it ever has been before. As I mentioned before there's been a huge shift to less polished more relatable content. So gone are the days that you have to go out and have a professional photo shoot and video shoot to be a creator. Platforms like Tik tok have made it much easier with their editing tools to slice together a video and create content. I think the most important part here is to establish an identity for yourself. If establish that identity and you keep your content consistent and you're authentic, your audience will find you. The social media platforms will make it so they do. Because at the the end of the the day they want consumers to stay on these platforms botas always say the hardest part is probably getting started so take that leak. Do that first Tik tok video or dance. And just be brave and get out there.
>>SPEAKER: What resources would you recommend for someone who might want to read up a little bit or watch a couple of videos about Tik tok or Instagram or any of the the the social media sites.
>>SPEAKER: Once again I love later. Their blog is very to the point and at the same time they go very in depth on not only different features of platforms and platforms themselves but also different techniques you can use to boost your following and boost engagement.
>>SPEAKER: Awesome. What challenges have you experienced -- yes I guess that's good. So you've worked with your own client. Have you encouraged them to make their social media more equitable and what challenges have you run into while doing that.
>>SPEAKER: I'm going to use Kahava as an example again and I am not trying to beat up on this client they are one of my favorite clients to work with because I love craft beer but I think the biggest challenge in making their social media more accessible was starting that conversation. I felt like I could not -- it wasn't really my duty to approach them about it. It was more so their job to ask the the question and I give them the the answer and since the the BLM movement I have seen a lot of progress when it comes to Kahava because they asked that initial question what can we do to support this movement what can we do to make everyone feel like they are more welcome in our tap room and keep in mind that all of the the suggestion that have been made didn't necessarily come from me. We convened just a panel of people within the black and brown people within the craft beer industry and had a very open and honest discussion about what the craft beer community here in Birmingham could do to create more accessible more welcoming a more diverse space and that stemmed from my partner joining the conversation and expressing some of his problems with the space and how some things weren't as successful to him. So that conversation has evolved in to not only welcoming people of color but also different people that love craft beer love it. But don't necessarily see themselves in a place like that in their social media in their marketing aren't necessarily comfortable in their space. The hardest part was starting that conversation but now we're at a place where we're very comfortable voicing our opinions and feeling like we are going to be heard and I think that that makes all the difference.
>>SPEAKER: Okay I can see where that's coming from. With you you're as about owner so I could understand in that arena, maybe you felt like this is my client I'm going to let them approach this. But if you have someone maybe someone in the deaf community the blind community another way who that's not really their situation they need to actually advocate for themselves in that kind of arena how would you recommend they maybe try to go about that?
>>SPEAKER: They would need to reach out and start that conversation. With a lot of clients sometimes I'll just get messages on their Instagram and someone from a community that's not necessarily represented and can't necessarily access the content the way that they need to will ask that question and it's all about coming from a place of just love if that makes sense. Not necessarily feeling attacks but coming from a place where you want to understand, you want it to be more equitable you want it to be more accessible so while I know that it can be very hard to reach out and start that conversation nine times out of ten they're not going to know unless you tell them.
>>SPEAKER: That makes sense.
>>SPEAKER: Do you feel like social media can be a way to start that conversation if someone perhaps is not comfortable doing that in person. Sliding into the DMs as the kids say, do you think that can be a way to start that conversation and get that going.
>>SPEAKER: I think that's a perfect way to start the conversation. Honestly that and emailing them are probably going to be some of the best ways because you do have to keep in mind that sometimes brands don't have someone like me that's mining their social media so they might miss your message they're not intentionally ignoring you whatsoever they just don't have a dedicated person for that. So emailing them or messaging them, sliding into their DMs is going to be, I think some of the best ways to contact them. Because I don't think, especially taking into consideration whatever disability you do have I don't think calling them is going to be the best thing to do. Because somebody random is probably going to pick up the phone. It's not necessarily going to be a person that can answer your question or really help you with whatever you're bringing up to the thes about. So sending a message or an e-mail eventually that conversation is going to get started with the right person and it's not going to be on you if that makes sense.
>>SPEAKER: Yeah that makes perfect sense. So I hope it's okay Desiree has another question for you. And this is pretty great. She says that she -- sorry I moved that over here. She says that she's starting out as a deaf blogger and a Tik tok creator. Most of her content is about deaf struggles deaf mother hood, her daily life, grief, and story telling in AS ASL. Are there other resources that you might have that you think would be helpful for her and others in her situation. I know you've already referenced later. She's wondering what can she do to show her authenticity sorry I think I said that right. She's just wondering what she can do to kind of set her herself apart from the millions of other users out there.
>>SPEAKER: Right. So there's several different things you can do. in terms of actual content creation to give you insight into what we do here at iron city social we attack content in three different ways. For some we either follow a prompt. For example for a wild honey flower truck we essentially do we're going to post about flowers we're going to post about the studio we're going to post about the flower truck and we're going to post about events and we're going to post something really funny. That's what every single piece of content that we make for them feeds from and it goes exactly in that order with every single thing that we make. Other clients on the other hand we do what we call kind of like a monthly marketing prompt. Where we not only look over the calendar for specific holidays that we can used to inspire content we set a theme for content. For example not only this months theme but this quarters theme for iron city social is the social struggle so we're diving into different strugm that people have when they come to social media. And the last way we create content is it is completely off the cuff. We don't plan anything, we're not following any themes, we open up the app and make a post. I think when it comes to creating authentic content it's very easy to over think it. And while my personality is I want it as planned out as I possibly can get it honestly when I'm writing posts for iron city social I follow the prompt but I take inspiration from what's happened to me both personally and professionally in the last week especially when it comes to writing our e-mail news letter. Because that's how I know to be authentic. It's kind of planned but it's kind of not at the same time. So I know it's very hard not to get into that stringent like I have to be authentic but who am I kind of thing you know. It's kind of like when someone asks you tell me about yourself and you're like you don't know what to say. But that's just that's what being authentic on social media is. It's showing every part of you and every piece of you and feeling no shame. Of course feeling some vulnerability but feeling a lot of power in that too. I hope that answered your question. If it didn't let me know.
>>SPEAKER: There's an old quote about writing that I love. I was a journalist. Writing is easy. You just sit down at a type writer open a thing and bleed. And that sounds like where you're going with this social media thing. Tik tokes easy. Just open a vein and bleed. But don't actually do that because that would not be okay.
>>SPEAKER: Yeah with the real content creators the ones that aren't necessarily selling that foe lifestyle that’s what they do. They are very norm normal very open and really pour themselves into these about that they've created.
>>SPEAKER: So what are -- what are some of the barriers that you have seen from your experience or from other peoples of color that are trying to break things as social media or content creators. Inca appropriation are is probably one of those things. Are there other things that you can think of.
>>SPEAKER: I definitely think education is a barrier when it comes to social media. Because while some posts go viral and we have no idea why it's what we call a unicorn post. But at the same time there's a lot of technique and education that comes into play even for content creators when it comes to marketing and that it's not that the information isn't readily accessible it's that there's no they don't know that it's out there. It's not the kind of thing you find with a simple google because it's so saturate would everyone putting out their personal opinion whether it's right or whether it's wrong on how to be successful when it comes to social media. So I think finding a mentor or a local marketing’s about to just lean on and that will openly have those conversations with you is another barrier and I think it has a lot to do with feeling seen as well. Because someone that's black or brown may not necessarily want to approach someone white and ask them how they've done it. So that's Inca appropriation of black and brown content and just barriers to education and growth rate the main things that are really holding content creators of color and with disabilities for that matter into ent entering like this industry.
>>SPEAKER: So right now so many people are experiencing burn out isolation they want to be connected to people but it's been a year and a half and they're not sure how comfortable they are with that. I know we have seen recently lots of stories about how social media can actually sometimes be an -- for burn out or for negative self, I think we've all seen that lately with Facebook and Instagram especially being spot lighted. Have you seen anyway that people can use social media especially to connect to get those feelings of positivity where social media can be a really b positive influence for people.
>>SPEAKER: I think a ton of people found that with Facebook groups and with Tik tok last year. Of course Instagram was still in play but a lot of time times it is hard to make that real connection on Instagram since there's no way to really work within that group or not. I know just for example through COVID a lot of people set up trade groups on Facebook where they were literally just trading everyday items like toilet paper and food and things like that. Yeah. So it was a valuable resource in a lot of communities because it was not so much hey I'm out of toilet paper I can't find any does anyone in the community have something. It was more so I've lost my job and I can't afford to buy this can anyone help me take this situation. So I think like Facebook was big for that throughout COVID and I know I found a lot of community in Facebook groups as well for different reasons and with Tik tok I think Tik tok in the format that you create content made becoming a content creator more accessible because you have to consider the fact that it's an all in one platform when it comes to content create creators. They can record a video on their phone, slice it up, stitch it together, put music to it and send it out. You didn't have to have a video camera or a mic or anything like that to get content out there. You could just do it. So with Tik tok I think it just it created visibility for a lot of niche members of the community that didn't really, weren't seeing themselves on Instagram or linked in or Facebook. But they could more so easily dive into like people say it all the the time. I don't know the LGBTQ side of Tik tok. Or just whatever side of Tik tok really resonates with you know.
>>SPEAKER: Yeah wanted to tell you Desiree said thank you she got a lot out of that answer so thank for you doing that. And elaborating on that.
>>SPEAKER: Good.
>>SPEAKER: So we've got about ten minutes left. We'd love to hear more about what kind of services iron city social provides and how they can contact you if they want to follow up with you.
>>SPEAKER: Yeah so we are a full service marketing firm. We help clients with everything from social media marketing to website design to just general consult coaching services. Whey pride myself on when it comes to thesis about is the fact that we have tried to price our services as an affordable rate which is why we offer the coaching and consult consulting services. Because it's more so a way for you to have someone to lean on when it comes to executing your marketing, coming up with ideas thing things like that but it's flexible enough to fit into your budget. So what I would suggest is to go to our website and just look around get a feel for us. If that doesn't work for you you can definitely e-mail me at Kayla at iron city social.com and I know I say iron with such a southern drawl and I have tried so hard to work myself out of that but it's iron like iron. But yeah. Follow us on social media.
>>SPEAKER: I don't think anyone here is minds at all. I definitely don't think most people hear care about your accent I will just say that so I wouldn't worry about that. But we have wealth back to wrap things up. I don't think we got any other audience questions so for myself Kayla thank you so much for the conversation I have enjoyed every minute.
>>SPEAKER: Great it was so nice chatting with you Amy.
>>SPEAKER: All right this was a fantastic discussion about social media and marketing and branding. Thank you so much we have so many things to keep in mind to share with our local community. So I just want to say our closing remarks thank you very much thank you Amy being willing to take over for Trey. We were sorry Trey wasn't able to attend but next time you're always welcome. Thank you Kayla for being willing to spend time with us and share your knowledge. Very much appreciated. So we have three interpreters we'd like special thanks to so we have dean jasmine and Don. So thank you for giving up your time to sign and voice for the community for both the deaf community and the hearing community we're here together so good work guys and then I want today share that if you want to learn more about creating accessible social media if you want to learn more about fostering equity there's a couple creators you can follow on Instagram. I want to highlight a few. One is definitely novel life. I'm reading from my phone and it's very tiny so bear with me. My glasses aren't helping out as much as they could. So follow them. Later media as well. So we have a few that we wanted to highlight. And one that later media.com that's a great one you can learn more about how to create accessibility, how to make sure that what the  content you create allows inclusion for all. And I wanted to if you're looking for captions a good company is A I media, three play, Rev, or if you want to learn how to caption on your own which in the deaf community I say we so much appreciate that you can follow cap wing. Of course you can follow us adjacent space and iron city social media. For more tips coming up in the future we're constantly providing valuable content to the community. So thank you again. To our wonderful folks we had here. This has been very very much a pleasure. And I hope you have a wonderful rest of your night.

Magic City Acceptance Center (MCAC) - November 12, 2020

In this talk MCAC and Adjacent Space share about the experiences of racism and homophobia intersecting with the experiences of audism and ableism, and how we all can make our communities stronger by breaking down barriers, and including more people at the table.

Lauren Jacobs is the Youth Programs Coordinator at Magic City Acceptance Center (MCAC) in Birmingham, Alabama. At MCAC, Lauren provides community building, sexual wellness/healthy relationship education, and STI testing and for LGBTQ youth ages 13-24. 

Lauren was a principal organizer for the Southeastern LGBTQ Student Leadership Conference, offering space for hundreds of students to build a diverse community of LGBTQ southerners.  She has contributed writing to Autostraddle.com, the world's biggest queer women's website, and served as associate producer to Alabama Bound, an award-winning documentary that has brought stories of lesbian families in Alabama to screens around the country.     

Trey Gordon is the President for Adjacent Space and the brains behind the direction and shape of the non profit structure. He drives the mission, policies, procedures and facilitates many conversations through events such as Think Tank. 

Trey Gordon is fully Deaf (emphasis on capitalization of “D” in deaf). He grew up in Alabama, attended the state school for the Deaf, and went to Gallaudet University, the only university in the world whose primary language in its college curriculum is ASL. After receiving his bachelor’s degree, he lived in India for almost four months serving their Deaf community, and learning Indian Sign Language.  He then went on to complete a masters’ degree in public administration and a certificate in nonprofit management. His experience and upbringing led him to notice omissions and failures to recognize the needs of our communities, and he wanted to be a part of a grassroots-fueled organization that could revolutionize the community with accessibility.