Let’s start the decade by getting the harassment of Disabled Women and non-binary folk made illegal in Britain as making something illegal is to bring in consequences for perpetrators. It is a genuine fear and a reality lived by many members of the disability community, with statistics showing that Disabled people are more than twice as likely to experience sexual assault and harassment. A petition has been launched to campaign towards a law being passed which makes harassment crime. Please sign this petition and make the world a slightly safer place.
Every day a Disabled person will encounter someone who wants to ‘help’, even if it isn’t asked for – hese people aren’t necessarily doing wrong by wanting to help out. Even worse, there are instances where people will, retaliate with aggression after being told ‘no’. Then there are the people who might ‘help’ to get people’s trust before doing something worse, such as sexual assault or inappropriately propositions which can be physically and mentally damaging to a Disabled person’s wellbeing.
In recent years we have seen the rise of campaigns to raise awareness of sexual assault and harassment such as #MeToo and #Timesup which has dominated the media. Thanks to social media people are finally speaking out, whether it be to share their story or showing solidarity.
We in the disability community have a similar tag of #JustAskDontGrab to share their stories and experiences of being ‘helped’ when they didn’t want it and weren’t asked if they did’ to inform the wider public of how best to help someone and with the importance of asking a Disabled people if they want any help. Fashion magazine Grazia has highlighted the campaign which has increased in support.
With the cold weather and dark nights officially upon us, it is important for Disabled and Chronically ill people to be as comfortable and safe as possible. Bristol blogger Niamh Gabrielle has written her own personal guide into surviving winter while Disabled and Chronically ill. Click here to read her personal blog post.
Keep up to date with Niamh on the following Socials:
Mental Health Act Review – Support Urgently needed!
Over the last few months a number of user-led groups have been campaigning for major changes in the Mental Health Act Review recommendations, to bring them in line with full human rights under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Will you help stop compulsory detention in hospital of people with mental health difficulties, autism and/or learning difficulties? Then please support this campaign by:
Using a one-page campaign sheet, availablehere, to get more signatures for the campaign from both individuals and organisations?
Using a model letter for MP candidates to call on them to support this campaign?
You can find a copy with hyperlinks here and one with full web links here. For guidance about how to contact MP candidates, see here.
Access Sport want to help develop more disability inclusive opportunities in the South Bristol area so are inviting local sports clubs and disability/health/education providers to find out more about what we do and how we can support them to engage more Disabled young people in sport and physical activities.
They’ll discuss aspects of running a successful inclusive club, with clubs already working with them being able to provide real life examples with plenty of time for questions.
There will be two sessions –
Session 1: 15th November 2019 11:00 – 13:00 The Park Centre Knowle, BS4 1DQ Eventbrite link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/78619439861
Session 2: 19th November 2019 18:30 – 20:30 Merchants Academy Sports Centre, BS13 9BJ Eventbrite link : https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/78625381633
Don’t miss this fantastic, opportunity to get experience, gain skills and connect with other young creatives interested in film. As a student of the Film Academy:You will get hands-on filmmaking experience with industry standard kit which will help you to develop practical knowledge and skills.
You can explore your own creativity and passions in a supportive and dynamic environment.You will gain invaluable experience working alongside industry professionals You will watch a range of cinema from British independent to specialised films. You will work in teams to make a documentary or drama. Once you have completed the Network course, you will become part of the growing BFI Film Academy alumni network with access to opportunities such as BAFTA mentorships. You will also have the opportunity to complete a qualification on the course.
Courses cost £25. If you are unable to pay the full course fee, don’t let this discourage you from applying as costs may be waived. Bursaries for travel and childcare are also available if you require assistance with these costs.
Close your eyes and pretend you couldn’t get off a train. The doors are closing, no one is around to help you and you fear you’ll end up miles from home. Currently this happens to disabled passengers every single day, with 1 in 10 assistance requests not working.
The Government should include reducing the number of failed assistance requests as a condition for maintaining and awarding franchises (by improving processes & communication, staff training & data collection). The Government and franchise holders should fund greater investment in level access & automatic ramps.
MerseyRail are soon to achieve level access – this is the standard that the whole of the UK should reach. Disabled people have to right to be confident in public transport.
A journalist from the BBC has been in touch – he’d like to write about this campaign. In particular he wants to hear from people who have been forced to travel a long distance for an assessment, only to get there and find out the staff member assessing them has called in sick, meaning their appointment has been cancelled. If you’ve been made to travel long distances for assessments despite being ill or disabled, and would be interested to speak to a journalist please let the 38 Degrees team know by filling out this quick survey.
I have emailed the new Secretary of State today to ask for a follow up meeting that was promised earlier this year to discuss how we can fix this problem. I have again expressed my concerns about the above issue and am putting pressure on all concerned.
It would be helpful if you would kindly share the petition again with friends, family, collegues – and take the above survey if you’ve been personally affected.