“Crip Camp” is vying for Best Feature Documentary at Sunday’s Academy Awards ceremony. The film, directed by James LeBrecht, puts Camp Jened at the vanguard of a movement for disability rights. Camp Jened is a summer camp for campers with disabilities, giving the documentary its title. LeBrecht, a spina bifida survivor, attended the camp in the ’70s.
“Crip Camp” informs viewers of the struggle for disability rights including when disability rights activists staged a sit-in at the Health, Education, and Welfare Department. The FBI cut phone services to the building, and Deaf activists kept communications open with American Sign Language.
The film first screened at the Sundance Film Festival and has support from Barack and Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground production deal. The documentary is on Netflix and YouTube, too.