Access Living Leader recognized for his housing advocacy efforts

Beto receiving the award from MTO Executive Director John Bartlett
Congratulations to Access Living’s Beto Barrera. Beto was recently honored at the Metropolitan Tenants’ Organizations (MTO) Renters’ Spring Celebration. MTO presented Beto a “Tenant Champion” Award for his work on behalf of people with disabilities who face housing discrimination and for his work to expand fair housing laws.

The Manager of Community Organizing, Beto coordinates Access Living’s grassroots organizing groups. The organizing groups, aligned under of the umbrella of “Power to the People,” address issues pertaining to youth with disabilities, housing, employment, Latinos with Disabilities, education, and health care. Beto has worked with Access Living and in the disability community for more than 20 years. Prior to his position as Manager of Community Organizing, Beto organized Access Living’s housing work, advocating to enforce the housing rights of people with disabilities and to expand housing options for people with disabilities.

Beto was thrilled to receive the award. “This (MTO) is one of the first non-disability organizations to recognize disability,” Beto said. “I think we are becoming more visible and making an impact in social justice.” Beto explained that with this progress, disability and disability issues are now part of the discussion, and part of the broader agenda. “I am happy to say we are now on the bottom of the Totem Pole.” While it may be difficult to celebrate a place at the bottom of the pole, according to Beto, disability used to not even have a place on the pole.

Keep up the good work Beto and MTO.