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Disability Discrimination - Where are we now?

25 years ago, in 1995 the Disability Discrimination Act came in, and then was replaced in 2010 by the Equality Act. So why are people with disabilities still being forgotten today?

During COVID-19 some disabled people are not seeing their support in person, or not getting the equipment they need. At the beginning of COVID-19 do not resuscitate were put on the notes of people with learning disabilities, without even talking to them or their families about it.

When I heard this, I was sad and I was angry!

I thought, in 18 years working in self advocacy and fighting for change, people still don’t listen to us, people still don’t care about our lives. We still don’t matter.

People are still being abused and restrained, just for being themselves. Why are we being punished?

I get so angry, I feel like we are being treated like children, that we aren’t given the chance to take risks or make our own choices. Please just give us a chance.

When I was younger, professionals told my parents that I would have a learning disability and not to have high expectations of me working or living an Independent life, but I proved them all wrong. I live on my own, am the Assistant Manger of an amazing organisation and have a wonderful fiancé!

It is really sad that people with disabilities are still hidden away. In the past we were sent to institutions away from the rest of society, and today we still aren’t treated as equals. We don’t often see people with learning disabilities in our favourite TV shows or in sport, our gifts and personalities are still being hidden and it needs to stop. I want people with learning disabilities to be seen everywhere and to be respected as members of the community.

At People First Forum we fight locally for our rights. Our Bill of Rights includes the right to good healthcare, the right to support when and if I need it and the right to be heard by the government. But more needs to be done locally and nationally to really make a difference, and for us to be seen and for our voices to be heard, because we do matter.


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