The Future is Accessible for people with disabilities | Latest News

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The Future is Accessible for people with disabilities | Latest News

The Future is Accessible for people with disabilities

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The 3rd December marks International Day of People with Disabilities (IDPWD). The estimated 13.9 million people living with disabilities in the UK face numerous barriers to inclusion throughout many aspects of society. As a result, people with disabilities do not enjoy access to society on an equal basis with others. International Day of People with Disabilities falls on the 3rd of December each year, with the aim of promoting empowerment, and helping to create real opportunities for people with disabilities.

IDPWD strongly believes a person is not inherently ‘disabled’… disability is NOT a feature of a person.  Instead they say that people have health impairments; some of us need wheelchairs to mobilise; some of us need dogs to help us see; some of us need assistive technology – just like some of us need glasses to read; or medication to manage pain; or an inhaler to manage asthma.  It’s just that people have different health impairments at some time in their lives.  The difference is that most of the time the health impairment doesn’t stop you from functioning, being included or participating in your community.

The theme of 2019 is "The Future is Accessible".

This means that we must all, together, look towards a future where the barriers which stand in people’s way no longer exist.  We envisage a future where people can access a building without using stairs; where a person can access a ramp to the beach; or can get a job without fear of discrimination. Working towards an accessible future is everyone’s responsibility.  Call out barriers wherever you see them and get involved in work to overcome them. 

In April of this year, the NHS Workforce Disability Equality Standard (WDES) came into force – it is a set of specific measures which enable NHS organisations to compare the experiences of disabled and non-disabled staff. It is important because research shows that a motivated, included and valued workforce help to deliver high quality patient care, increased patient satisfaction and improved patient safety.

As an organisation we are aiming to highlight barriers, and propose solutions to overcome those barriers for our people, through the ‘Living with Disability Inclusion Ambassador Forum”. We are currently scheduling dates for 2020 and will post them on the Trust e-learning site (under the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion section) as soon as we can. If you are interested in helping to make a positive difference and wish to join the forum please email leadership@lthtr.nhs.uk

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