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Disability Discrimination.... Strikes Again

Claire_83Claire_83 Member Posts: 2 Listener
edited November 2019 in Disabled people


A lady at Scope has suggested I post my most recent blog post here. If you like it feel free to look at my other posts some focusing on my disability and others on parenting. If you do like it I would love for you to become a 'friend'.

https://www.facebook.com/semblance-of-normality-761528370858372



Disability Discrimination…. Strikes Again

 

I'm really torn: I want to tell you all about how life is as a newly disabled person, because although it can be depressing, in so many other ways it's surprising and interesting.

But I also don't want, and can’t afford, to depress myself by purposely thinking about all things that totally wind me up.

So, dear readers, I have decided I am going to list all the things that are winding me up at the moment but do so briefly and not dwell and not make myself cross! I have also written this post in several sittings to avoid REALLY winding myself up:

 

I haven't done a blog about discrimination for a while because I didn't want to come across as just whinging about my disabilities.

 

However, when things are done by other people or companies which actually make it even harder, it's already hard enough, there is a big problem.

 

Disability can happen to anyone at anytime - as I found out.

 

In her book, Discrimination Law, Sandra Fredman (second edition, 2010, Oxford University Press) talks about how surprising it is, given its random nature, that society stigmatises, is prejudiced against and excludes disabled people.

Below are my current niggles. They range from what I see as ‘proper’ Disability Discrimination, in particular Indirect Discrimination and a failure to make reasonable adjustments right down to things that don't seriously affect me but really wind me up.

 

Before my brain haemorrhage in 2013 I was a solicitor. And to be honest, I wish I hadn't studied discrimination law because thinking something is discriminatory, saying it is and then having absolutely nothing change is incredibly frustrating!

I feel like I constantly have to battle for everything that able-bodied people take for granted. And to be quite honest, it's exhausting. I have written so many letters and emails. The harsh reality is it OK because it isn't you…But it is me, it is my life and it is for the 13.9 million other disabled people in the UK.

So here we go. The current (there have been and will be others) list of things that wind me up:

·         NCP have an under 2-hour time constraint on the car park I want to use in Colchester town centre, which I think is very unfair. Sure, it might sound fair as it’s equal - everyone pays £6 for under 2 hours parking (as of Nov '18). But we aren’t all equal! I can do hardly anything in 2 hours because of my mobility. The truth is, I am not equal in this sense. Because of my disability, because of the restrictions on my mobility, I need more time.

 

However, this policy hasn't been adjusted to make it fairer for people like me. I don't want free parking - just fairer parking!

 

·         The access pathways from the much-needed new disabled car park at Colchester General Hospital are in opposite direction to the main entrance. I mean, seriously, it isn't rocket science to install them in the direction users might actually want to go…

 

·         A local theatre has a segregated area for wheelchair users. Perhaps wheelchair users like this? I was told they did have feedback and it was very positive (!) Apparently if you sit in a wheelchair, you have to be in their special area but if you can transfer you can sit elsewhere. I was hoping wheelchair users had a choice - there was a flat level previously for wheelchair users, indeed I have used it, at the end of row J (I think). However, I was told that having wheelchairs at the end of this one row on a flat level was awkward for other theatre goers...

I know that when I was in a wheelchair (and this was luckily only for 6 months), I would have flatly refused to go in a special area just for wheelchairs only even if I could have my friends and family with me.  I wouldn't have wanted to be differentiated just because of my disabilities relating to my mobility from other theatre goers. I go to the theatre to escape my reality, not to be reminded of it.

 

·         There are no maps available showing disabled parking available in Colchester town centre. You would think something like this would be easy just to print off, but it’s not. Because the maps don't exist. You know what? They really should! I’ll draw one for them if they want.

·          I was going to complain about the market on Colchester High Street preventing disabled people parking on the high street on certain days. Therefore you can't be disabled on Friday and Saturday...However, I understand that they have moved it - yay I think it had more to do with low market figures as opposed to preventing disabled people parking but yay anyway

 

At the risk of sounding like I am just whinging, I know life is harder than it should be for those of us who are disabled. Changes should and could be made to make our lives better. So, I will carry on writing my letters and emails because as I have mentioned before, I persevere. And on this subject, I know I am right.

 

 

 


Replies

  • Connie00Connie00 Member Posts: 255 Pioneering

    Hello @Claire_83    :) 

     

    My Name is Connie00

    I am one off the community Champion’s here at Scope.  it’s really nice to meet you.

    A very warm welcome to the Community.

    Thank you for reaching out to us, and thank you so much for sharing your story, you are one amazing writer. its hard to comprehend at first becoming disabled, coping with a disability, here at scope we have people from all walks of life many different disabilities, but we all share the same feelings. a sense of loss for those of us that were lucky to have had so much before, and lost it. but we also have Members on here that will never know the freedom we once had, now we share their world. it's just crazy. accepting is one of the hardest things ever,

    We are always here to lend support, help, and advise where we can,

    If we can be of any assistance to you please don’t hesitate to contact us

     

     

     

    @connie00   :) 


  • Claire_83Claire_83 Member Posts: 2 Listener
    edited November 2019
    thank you!

    I am bit concerned I should have put this in a relevant 'popular group' what do you think can I re-post it there too?
  • pcoventrypcoventry Member Posts: 149 Pioneering
    I know what you mean. I went for a job I was qualified and experienced in, had demonstrated I had experience and therefore (apparently) was guaranteed an interview  - But I was turned down for this reason "If you had to get up the stairs quick you would not be able to do so" and this was by a friggin local Council!

    It sucks 
  • zakbloodzakblood Member Posts: 419 Pioneering
    im in the process of going back to work, so yes know how you feel, just filled in a medical questionnaire and now guess i'll be doing a work based assessment, so yes the DWP on it's WCA found me fit and well with a 0 scored after 20 years of being on ESA and incapacity, now after 31 face to face interviews and god knows how many phone ones, i get offered a job, i'm honest and have told them everything at the interview stages, so 20 years of know paid work history and no experience in the job i was going for, but was still taken on and offered the job, now all i have to do is jump through one more hoop and the jobs mine, but what if i fail it? DWP says i'm fit and well and no longer ill and shouldn't be on ESA in the support group, job center and work coaches says i'm not well enough for them to take me on, never mind what the WCA says, so i went out on my own and found a job, but if i fail the medical, where does that leave me?

    oh and the lady amy my local council office called me work shy, as she stated her husband has the same main medical condition as me and he works, so seems i can win, but i can trying, what doesn't kill me, can only make me stronger
  • zakbloodzakblood Member Posts: 419 Pioneering
    oh and i forgot to say, my support at the job center was a disabled Gentleman, who stated the canteen is upstairs, there are no lifts in the building either, so he eats at his desk or goes outside and sits in his car for breaks, yes you couldn't make it up, he says the workplace is getting better, as at least now they have a working toilet downstairs, so kind of makes me feel happy just getting a job offer, and whatever happens from now, at least i'm trying, which is more than what i can say for the DWP, who just don't care whatsoever 
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Member Posts: 2,032 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi, I often go to my local VUE cinema. I have a CEA card so my carer gets a complimentary ticket...great..only £4.99 for us to see a movie!

    It is a fairly newly built complex...BUT only 4 out of the 9 screens have wheelchairs spaces upstairs. If there is a film I`d like to see and it is showing in screens 5 - 9, I don't go! Because I would have too sit right by the screen, with my neck craned and feel sickly because the action is happening a few feet away. I cant see the whole screen very well either..it isn't a pleasant experience.

    Now if the film is on in screen 1 - 4. I go upstairs in a lift and sit in what we call `The Royal Box`. One screen allows just 1 wheelchair user and a carer, the others allow 2 of each.

    So we rush to get there first. I don't book in advance, because I may not feel well enough to go. And what if the lift breaks down? Fancy building a new complex from scratch and only making 4 screens out of 9 truly suitable?
  • pcoventrypcoventry Member Posts: 149 Pioneering
    edited November 2019
    @pollyanna1052 No idea what that's got to do with the thread but I agree the CEA card is good

    @zakblood I am currently waiting for an appeal about the WCA etc - I was told I could and should sit in a call centre for my money - that's fine but when I was in the Job centre I asked them to find me a job with this that and the other I was told "everyone here gets PIP and they work" My response of "Yes but from what I can see you can all walk and I can't!" was just ignored. In fact my doctor gave me a sick note stating I was not to be forced into work unless he gave the OK - My old Work Coaches response?

    "Oh no we can ignore your doctor because we say you are fit for work" Bearing in mine Case Managers are as qualified as the postman in medical matters.

    She's no longer my work coach - and that little comment cost them £5000 at a hearing - which I gave to the local Hospital to go towards a new machine for the kiddies, as it was more about Principle than money

    My current PIP Tribunal is all about the DA missing out sections and the office person at the other end just going on what they said.. It's a real waste of money - if all they are going to do is copy what the DA says - the DA's report should be the one that decides. You then have accountability unlike now.

    So yes I agree - some of them are total assholes!


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