It’s now 2024 (Happy New Year!) and even now, disability is a taboo subject. In my forty years of having Cerebral Palsy, I’ve experienced many reactions to my disability and how people struggle to interact with me. They’re often not sure what to say or they want to offer support but they’re worried about offending me. Most people have great intentions but they just lack confidence with interacting with disabled people. That’s why I’m running a Disability Etiquette workshop on Tuesday 30th January.
Negative attitudes towards disabled people
According to the Disability Charity Scope, there are 16 million people in the UK who have a disability. Scope’s research carried out in 2022, indicates that 3 out of 4 disabled people have experienced negative attitudes or behaviour in the last 5 years. (Source: Scope Attitudes & Disability, 2022) As I said, I’ve experienced those negative attitudes countless times myself but I have no doubt that much of it is caused by a lack of understanding, rather than any kind of malicious intent to cause upset. As much as these incidents often make me angry, I’ve often reflected upon them and realised that the person really hadn’t meant to cause offense; they just simply didn’t realise.
What’s involved in the workshop
The workshop I’ve designed is meant to be an informative but light-hearted list of the “Do’s and Don’ts” of what I call Disability Etiquette. It’ll cover the language that is preferred by the disabled community, as well as words and terms that you should avoid using. I’ll be explaining the best ways to offer support to a disabled person, without causing offence or limiting someone’s independence. We’ll also talk about how to navigate communication issues, with lots of real-life examples thrown in too!
The workshop isn’t about berating anyone for being unsure. It’s simply about building your confidence when interacting with disabled people. It’s also an opportunity to ask about anything you might be worried about.
To book your place, please Contact Me.