So today is Blogging Against Disablism Day – #BADD – and I can’t resist, mainly because we are whizzing backwards towards the bad old days for disabled people in this country – the UK – (and I suspect many others too). If I manage to inject any humour into this, it’ll be a miracle!
Austerity, which never made any sense to me anyway, was used on us (disabled people) first and hundreds of thousands of us have had money on which we absolutely depended, taken away from our already small budgets. Some have died of starvation; some have committed suicide, some have died because they could no longer get the care they needed and I pay my respects here to all of them. Far too many have lost their jobs – despite the Government’s mantra of needing to get us all into work, because they have had their cars taken away and can no longer get to their workplaces! Then there are all those who have lost the Independent Living Fund and are staring at the looming black hole of being put in (or back in) institutions.
And with cuts to Access to Work Funding (yet another clear bit of evidence that the Government is not genuine about getting us into work) employers have been given the green light to avoid making reasonable adjustments and are even less likely to offer us jobs.
So my main beef is that our beloved (cough! choke!) government is the main source of disablism right now, not only creating or perhaps worse, re-instating barriers to our inclusion in society, but also encouraging right-wing people to abuse us. Hate crime has shot up in recent years and attitudes towards us have hardened.
Meanwhile, all signs of democracy are vanishing into the mists and bringing a real chill.
So I suppose I’m saying that with the Government leading the charge to disable us in every way possible, we might as well call our Prime Minister ‘Dodgy Dave, the Disabling Dictator’.
But I am proud of the many, many disabled folk who fight and fight and fight, not just for themselves, but for others. We have so much to celebrate about our community of crips!