UK Disability History Month has been an annual event since 2010 and runs between mid-November and Mid December. This year it is running between 18th November – 18th December. Find out more about the history of Disability History Month here.
I know what you’re thinking – it’s far too early to be thinking about anything that is happening in the cold dark months of winter! However, we’re planning our promotion of the event this year and will do anything to distract from the fact supermarket shelves are already filled with Christmas Jumpers.
Each Disability History Month has 2 themes, and this year they are:
Disability and Hidden Impairment
Disability, Sex and Relationships
Back in August our wonderful member of staff Eddi Gell wrote a blog post around the theme of Sex, Intimacy and Disability. In the blog Eddi shares some insightful statistics. For example, "44% of Britons would not consider having sex with someone who had a physical disability." (Mann, 2014) and “Lack of adequate sexual education can increase chances of sexual assault and victimisation” (Campbell, Löfgren-Mårtenson & Santinele Martino, 2020, p361). They go on to write about the importance of sex education and how to tackle stigma. Eddi has also created a survey for you to share your own views and experiences. You can read the full blog post here.
More than half the 13.5 million people currently identified as disabled in the UK have hidden impairments. These impairments are not immediately apparent to others and include non-visible chronic illnesses such as diabetes, chronic pain or fatigue, respiratory conditions and incontinence, as well as learning difficulties, mental health conditions and sensory impairment. Many people with hidden impairments who can pass as non-disabled have chosen not to identify as disabled. The government acknowledges that it can be “difficult for people with non-visible disabilities to access what they need.”
This Disability History Month we’d like to showcase stories that follow these questions:
Disability and Hidden Impairment - Do you have a story to share with us about your hidden impairment experiences? Have you found it difficult to access services or make your voice heard due to the invisibility of your disability or chronic illness? Do you identify as non-disabled because your disability is not obvious to others?
Disability Sex and Relationships - Reflecting on your experiences, do you feel your education of sex and relationships was inclusive? How can sex and relationship education be improved? Do you see disabled people in relationships represented in the media?
Your story can come in any form that’s accessible to you – written, artwork, a video, whatever feels good!
Get in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org any time between now and the end of Disability History Month 2021 and send in your story.
We look forward to hearing from you!