“There is no justice without thinking about people with disabilities, especially when it comes to minority populations that have histories marked by absence and neglect. Inspiring others is key to building a less unequal future.”

Luciana Viegas is an educator and an activist for people with disabilities, especially Black people with disabilities. She is the executive director of Vidas Negras Com Deficiência Importam (Black Disabled Lives Matter), which raises awareness of the experiences of black people with disabilities in Brazil, and is a consultant on accessibility and intersectionality for diversity and inclusion projects such as Educations System for an Antiracist Transformation (SETA), which proposes solutions for anti-racist and anti-bias education throughout Brazil. She also works to address ableism in the job market and the representation of people with disabilities in society and the media.

Luciana represented the Black Disabled Lives Matter movement in the Supreme Court in 2021 against a case concerning the regulation of specialized schools. In 2023, she spoke at the United Nations about improving conditions for Black people with disabilities in Brazil. She was named to Diversability’s 2022 D-30 Disability Impact list.

Luciana’s activism emerges from the intersection of racism and ableism and how these prejudices affect the lives of Black people with disabilities. Using data analysis, documentation, and leadership development, she works to confront Brazil’s history of colonization and slavery while bringing visibility to the inequalities so many Black Brazilians face. She aims to create a more just, equal, sensitive, and welcoming environment for Black people with disabilities.