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There are nearly 13 million disabled people in Great Britain, nearly one in five of the population.
The law says you are disabled if you have “a physical or mental impairment, which has substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person's ability to carry out day-to-day activities” (Disability Discrimination Act).
Many of us have impairments, like needing glasses or having asthma. But we only become disabled if society puts barriers in the way of us leading normal lives, such as narrow doorways or steps for a wheelchair user. This is called the social model of disability.
We've compiled some ideas to help teach students about disability from this angle.
1. Write a diary of what you did today. Now imagine you are disabled. How would your day be different? What would you still be able to do and what would you not be able to do? Where could you go and where not? Now underline all the barriers you faced.
2. Make a list of the barriers you faced and think about solutions to them.
3. Now think of your school. How many barriers would disabled pupils face? Write a letter to the Governors making a case to remove these barriers in your school.
4. On a large sheet of paper draw a diagram of yourself in the middle and draw symbols for all the people and things that support your life, such as your family, shops, school, bus, family car, holidays, house, furniture, computer, toys, doctor, hospital, police, fire service, Council, bank and so on. You may need to think of things your parents or carers do that support you.
5. Next to each of these symbols draw a box and note down what would make getting this support difficult or impossible.
All those who provide a service to the public such as schools, hospitals, Councils, the police, Government and the BBC, will be required to promote disability equality by law. This will include:
6. For your school, write about what will have to change and how this could happen.
@MntalStrugglin on Twitter asks:
First time user of site, don't know how to go about it
We've launched a new education programme for secondary school students aged 11 to 16.
Find out how @Scope is helping people to feel more confident about disability. Help us #EndTheAwkward http://bit.ly/2egoZQx