International Day for People with Disabilities: let’s celebrate!


It is 3 December. In 1992, the United Nations declared this date to be the International Day for People with Disabilities. 

It is a day to celebrate disabled rights and talents. We are at least 20% of the working population and we contribute so much which often goes unrecognised.

2020 has highlighted inequalities as never before. Suddenly, governments have been pressured, by the Covid-19 pandemic, to take inequality more seriously because the virus affects us all. 

This year Result CIC’s Directors, Hormoz and Jane, will be speakers at an online event at Liverpool John Moores University – ‘What does an accessible future look like?’. It is a timely question. Disability rights campaigners have been emphasising to policy makers the greater impact of the pandemic on disabled people and our lives and livelihoods. 

The disability rights movement, which took sustained direct action at Parliament which helped to support the creation, in 1970 of the first legislation to enshrine disability rights, took the expression ‘Nothing about us without us’. That was half a century ago. Yet sadly so much is still being done which excludes us. Social media campaigns such as #weshallnotberemoved are serving to remind everyone that not only are we still here, but we are doing ground-breaking, creative work which makes society a better place for everyone.

Access to information is one part of the campaign. Have you noticed that when there are broadcast announcements from the devolved administrations’ leaders in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland that there is always a sign language interpreter present? But when the broadcast is from Westminster, there is no interpreter. This has led to a campaign, #WhereIsTheInterpreter which has been taken up by the Shadow Minister for Disabled People, Vicky Foxcroft, MP.

Being, or becoming disabled, presents barriers and challenges which are sometimes unimaginable to those who are not disabled. Human beings have exceptional powers to learn and adapt. By finding ways to manage and develop through the challenges we get good at problem-solving, innovating, using our time and energy well, working and communication well with others, including those who support us, and remaining resilient. If we are going to thrive beyond this pandemic, aren’t these skills precisely the ones that we need to recognise and encourage?

We say yes!

Happy International Day for People with Disabilities 2020.


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