Pour ta lettre, je propose le suivant:
Mr Peter Ainsworth
House of Commons
Dear Mr Ainsworth,
For years we have talked about disability rights as an issue for a minority.
In reality, as the DRC’s Disability Debate, launched in June 2005, has established, Britain’s main public policy goals – economic prosperity, full employment, an end to child poverty, better health, less crime – will fail unless the experiences of people with impairments and long term health conditions are acknowledged and addressed.
I am convinced that effective public policy depends on social justice for disabled people; and we can achieve this justice by putting disability at the heart of public policy.
Such a policy, in my view, would involve the immediate implementation of the following:
# 1. Increase disabled people's participation in public, civic and community life
# 2. Close the employment gap
# 3. Ensure no-one is obliged to live in an institution
# 4. Support independent living
# 5. Create safe communities
# 6. Improve housing conditions
# 7. Promote children's life chances
# 8. Enhance vocational and personal skills
# 9. Tackle health inequalities
# 10. Effective legislation and institutions
I would appreciate the opportunity to discuss with you in person how these goals could be achieved.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Et pour ta compo...
A collective failure to recognise the experience of many disabled people for what it is – injustice leading to inequality – has resulted in widespread acceptance of situations that for any other group in society would be considered scandalous, and recognised as an unnecessary cost to society.
Discrimination and disadvantage often remain unquestioned where disabled people are concerned. This lazy fatalism is what has led in 2006 to disabled people’s inequality standing between Government and many of its major social and economic targets.
The definition of disability in the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) may bring into its scope lone parents developing serious depression, young men with learning or behavioural difficulties ending up in our prison system, people diagnosed with diabetes in middle age, older people with respiratory problems and people with HIV. Many of these people won’t think of themselves or be considered by others as ‘disabled people’, yet they may be the people facing the most severe exclusion requiring public policy attention.
Not everyone with experience of an impairment or long term health conditions will experience serious disadvantage during their lives. However, large numbers do experience profound social and economic exclusion – a result not of medical status but the environment, policies and attitudes they encounter. Exclusion is often magnified by other factors such as their age, ethnic origin or gender. Both women and some ethnic minority communities are over represented amongst disabled people.
People living with long term health conditions – diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, cancer, depression, bi-polar disorder – make up the armies of ‘disabled’ parents whose children live in poverty. They make up the huge numbers of people who want to work but are not working, sometimes because employers will not hire them; for instance, fewer than four in ten employers say they would be prepared to take on someone who had had a mental health problem; yet people with mental health problems are even more likely than other disabled people to want to work, and can work successfully if given a chance and the right support. This new agenda focuses on resolving the most deep-rooted and persistent inequality today, mitigating the greatest risks to disabled people over the coming 10–15 years and contributing to solutions for the major public policy issues that affect us all.