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Why businesses shouldn't ignore our needs as disabled people

Sophmorg Community member Posts: 3 Listener
Hi I'm Sophie Morgan, a TV presenter, artist, disability advisor and media executive. 

I'm involved in the Extra Costs Commission because, as a disabled person myself, I know that there are certain things we need that cost a lot of money to live our lives. It's not a level playing field. 

I've written a blog in the Huffington Post, and I'd love to hear your comments. Can you relate to this? Are there any travel or transport issues that you want to tell us about, so we can discuss as part of the commission? Please get in touch.


  • EllaB
    EllaB Community member Posts: 26 Connected
    Great blog Sophie! I totally agree. We have been trying to find somewhere to go out as a family for a Mother's Day lunch, but it has proven impossible as my brother uses a wheelchair and my dad is mobility impaired and unable to climb stairs. All the places we've looked at locally are totally unsuitable. There are 11 of us in the family, so I reckon that's just shy of £300 restaurants are missing out on this Sunday - not to mention the tip! Big Mistake!
  • Sophmorg
    Sophmorg Community member Posts: 3 Listener
    Thanks so much Ella...that is a big mistake - HUGE! Check out these guys, they may help you to find somewhere?
  • EllaB
    EllaB Community member Posts: 26 Connected
    Thanks for letting me know about Euan's Guide. I've just added it as a tip to the tip section here, as I thought it would be useful for other people too.
  • AndyIbbott
    AndyIbbott Community member Posts: 6 Listener
    edited March 2015
    Hi Sophie!

    Yes, its true!! I cannot believe to you go from hero to zero is a "few" short stages!
  • Noah
    Noah Community member Posts: 425 Pioneering
    Hi Sophie,

    Thanks for sharing such an interesting and amazing article with us. I think you are so right, businesses that take seriously the needs of the disabled customer and fully adapt, by making their products and services accessible to all, will reap huge rewards.

    With our aging population and those with disabilities ever increasing, the value of the purple pound is only going to increase with time, and its high time for business to wake up to the opportunities.  

    Business studies and anything related to disability is something that is very close to my heart. I'm planning to setup a small business in the near future, doing disability equality training, targeting businesses, and helping them see and understand the advantages of becoming more inclusive and accessible to all. 

    Would you be happy for me to possibly quote from your article? Plus any tips you can share on how I should go about it, would be so gratefully received - Like, anymore amazing articles you would recommend that I read :-)

    My planning, is only at very early stages, the hardest part is building up the confidence to just do it. I studied business, but this will be the first time ever, that I will have my own business, and it is quite scary! I have a huge amount learn.

    Welcome to the Scope online Community, it is really great to have someone with your expertise joining in.

  • Loofy112
    Loofy112 Community member Posts: 1 Listener
    Hello Sophie

    Great article, highlighting how the uk still has a major stigma over any form of disability, it doesn't matter how small the disability is, the people in shops, restaurants, offices, pubs, and the list goes on......pretend we don't exist.

    A few years ago I came out of Sloane Square tube station, a homeless guy, sat on the floor, not begging, just sat, commented, loud enough to be heard, "you ignore me, in the hope I will disappear. You feel if I have disappeared I don't exist, I am invisible, so I am not real!!" I went back and thanked him, I gave him, under protest, whatever cash I had, and I have never forgotten his words.

    The worrying thing is that now we, the disabled, are the New Homeless, and try as hard as we like, the people are embarrassed by us and want us to vanish. When we go out places and transport cannot help and support us, employers will not employ us, and if we are in a wheelchair, nobody ever sees it!!!!!

    I don't want to just paint a bleak picture here, but, we are really seeing the rough end of the stick, we have so much to offer, and yet no one believes us.......
  • Jo_N
    Jo_N Community member Posts: 1 Listener
    Hi Sophie

    Great article.   

    Having just returned from another hotel stay that was overshadowed due to the level access shower I had been promised turning out to be a very inaccessible bath, I would like it made illegal for any hotel room to be described as "accessible" if it does not have a level access shower with seat.    

    My other recent complaint is that Cineworld Cinema in Milton Keynes have upgraded their screens.  Before the upgrade they had wheelchair spaces.   In the upgrade these have been removed and not replaced.   They say they will be in the building snagging when all the screens have been refitted but they cannot say how long this will be.   In the meantime wheelchair users have to sit in the aisle, surrounded by bars like a caged animal, the only people who cannot sit next to someone.   
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