I Need Straws: The importance of the availability of plastic straws on request

There has been a great deal of discussion about banning single use plastic straws to reduce waste and toxins in our seas and oceans leading to environmental pollution.  A number of heritage organisations are now replacing plastic straws with paper straws in their cafes due to this reason.

By removing plastic straws we are excluding disabled people from being able to drink independently in our museum cafes.  Is this fair to exclude people, when there are other causes (wrapping, bags) too?

So, can we work together so our journals and magazines don’t arrive on our doorsteps wrapped in plastic?
Or can these be available online instead of printed?
For our meetings and conferences, can we print less?

Museum cafes have plastic straws available on request for people who need them.

Tourettes Hero, Jess Thom has written two excellent blog articles on the need for plastic straws in her day to day life.

Link: https://www.touretteshero.com/2018/03/19/the-straw-fan/  (read this article first)
Link: https://www.touretteshero.com/2018/07/11/ineedstraws/ (second article)

Penny Pepper, writer and Disability Activist has written for the Guardian on how plastic straws are vital to her and other disabled people.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/09/disabled-person-plastic-straws-baby-wipes

BBC:  Plastic straw ban disadvantages disabled people, says Paralympian
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-43485362

Have you written a blog on how banning plastic straws will effect you? Do let us know via info@musedcn.org.uk

 

 

Can you help? Neurodiverse participants needed for MA Arts based research (London)

Jess Starns, founder of ‘Dyspraxic Me’ a charity for young adults with dyspraxia. Jess is currently completing Inclusive Arts Practice MA at the University of Brighton.

From 15th October- 26th November 2018  Jess shall be delivering her research project. Jess’ Masters is arts based and shall be using art as a way together data and discussions responding to her research question.

The research question is:
How should we interpret and curate the history of labelling people with specific learning difficulties (neurodiversity)?

Jess is currently looking for a maximum of 10 participants to work with her as a group and being involved in the
arts-based research. The research is for participants who define themselves as having a specific learning difficulty (neurodiversity) for example dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, ADHD, ASD and autism.

The research will take place over 7 sessions. From 15th October till 25th November for 7 weeks.

The research will take place at the:
Free Space Project, Kentish Town Health Centre, 2 Bartholomew Road, London NW5 2BX.

Apart from the 2nd session on Tuesday 23rd October will take place at:
The Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road, Kings Cross, London NW1 2BE.

Each session will last for 3 hours from 11am till 1.30pm.

What is the purpose of the study/project?
The purpose and aims of the study are:

  • The research will start conversations through learning about neurodiversity history by exploring archives, newspaper articles and museum objects, reflecting on their own personal experiences, in comparison to, and informed by, archive items at the Wellcome Collection. Learning what is important to the neurodiverse community when telling the history of labelling people with learning difficulties including charitable, medical, educational and personal narratives.
  • Discuss how to tell an unbiased narrative through historical accounts and personal experiences.
  • The terminology to use when talking about neurodiversity, the history of classifying people with learning difficulties, challenge prejudice views, to think about why there is a focus on ‘curing’, exploring current attitudes and how we portray neurodiversity in the media.
  • Through the research I would hope to find out for museums and collections what’s important to the neurodiverse community when telling the history of labelling people with learning difficulties? Through the charitable, medical, educational and personal narratives.

Please let Jess know if you have any questions or would like to find out more about the research.

If you are interested and would like to know more information please contact Jess via her university email address: Jas35@brighton.ac.uk

How to be more accessible on social media: Twitter, Snapchat, Vimeo

Disability Co-operative Network

These are a selection of tips for various social media platforms: Worth noting captions on Vimeo here and accessibility on snapchat.  If you know of anymore, do let us know via info@musedcn.org.uk

Guidance on various platforms

https://siteimprove.com/en/blog/how-to-be-more-accessible-on-social-media/

https://www.facebook.com/accessibility

https://help.twitter.com/en/using-twitter/picture-descriptions

YouTube Captioning 

Auto-generating captions on Youtube are not accurate and therefore won’t be accessible to a number of audiences.
How to add your own captions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9cKgwnFIAw

This is another that is easy to follow: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJGiS83eQLk

Note: Stagetext have excellent guidance on how to produce captions for films which are available online.
You can find them here: https://www.musedcn.org.uk/2017/11/19/captioning-your-films-and-videos-stagetext/

 

 

 

Feeling The Future – Access To Arts and Culture For People with Visual Impairments Trizia Wells, Inclusion Manager at Eureka! The National Children’s Museum

Eureka Museum

Feeling the Future: Access to Arts and Culture for People with Visual Impairments tells how Eureka! has developed a series of sculpture workshops with partially sighted artist sculptor Lynn Cox and the artwork installation in February. There is also included Trizia’s recent visit to Bilbao in Spain with Traveleyes, which tells about tactile tours at the Bilbao’s Maritime Museum and Guggenheim Museum.

Link for the article is below:

First page of Feeling the Future Access to arts and Culture by Trizia Wells, Eureka
Feeling the Future – Access to Arts and Culture for People with Visual Impairments (click to download)

Global Accessibility Awareness Day: Live Art: Capturing Expressions with Tanya Raabe-Webber

Head and shoulders portrait of a person with Diversity written to the left side of the image

 

Click here for Tanya’s film about the event 

Join portrait artist Tanya Raabe-Webber in celebration of Global Accessibility Awareness Day. You’ll explore how talking with your subject and observing their movements can reveal their essence — even in the smallest motions. Then you’ll use iPad Pro, Apple Pencil and the Procreate app to capture the diversity of human expression, before playing your work back as animations.

Join Tanya on:
Thursday 17 May  6:30 pm – 8:00 pm at Apple Regent Street, London

Follow the hashtag #TodayatApple
Global Accessibility Awareness Day twitter feed: #gaad

Further details and directions are here: https://t.co/dPUx4YZBS0

 

Disabled Young People from across the Globe gathered at the First ever  ‘Commonwealth Disabled Youth Roundtable event’ during CHOGM in London

Include Me Too

Include Me TOO, a national (United Kingdom-based) charity celebrated their 10th Anniversary this year during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2018 held in London. During the CHOGM Summit the charity organised the first ever  Commonwealth DisabledYouth Roundtable Event as part of the ‘Commonwealth Include Me 2’ joint project led by Include Me TOO with the Commonwealth Youth Council to increase the inclusion, rights and participation for disabled children and young people from the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth Youth Council (CYC) represents 1.2 billion young people from across 53 countries of the Commonwealth

The roundtable event took place at the House of Lords as an official side event for the Commonwealth Forums Summit 2018 and hosted by The Hon Baroness Uddin and The Hon Lord Holmes.

‘It was a privilege to host the first ever Commonwealth Disabled Youth Event on behalf of CHOMG, given that 60 percent of the Commonwealth population is under the age of 30 years. Include Me TOO were instrumental in bringing together youth delegates from different parts of the world to the House of Lords as the event marked a step in the right direction for disabled youth to have a seat around the table and discuss issues that matter to them.’  said The Hon Baroness Uddin 

‘I was delighted to attend the Commonwealth Disabled Youth Roundtable event in Parliament this week.  The presentations given by the young people from across the Commonwealth were excellent and packed with insight.  They provided great hope for the future.’ said the Hon Lord Chris Holmes

Disabled young people representing Uganda,Tanzania, India, Sri Lanka, Australia, Botswana, Bangladesh and United Kingdom presented in topics which mattered to them and their peers, highlighting key issues impacting on disabled young people from their respective Commonwealth member countries. The focus was upon the Global Sustainable Development Goals ensuing disabled persons are not left behind. The presentations covered:

  • inclusive and fair quality education which promotes lifelong learning opportunities for disabled persons
  • addressing additional disadvantages disabled girls and women experience in particular when working towards their inclusion in the Gender Equality agenda
  • disabled persons and employment, improving access, support and negative attitudes in the workplace
  • highlighting key barriers and challenges disabled children and young people experience in Commonwealth communities regarding their rights, participation and inclusion
  • the importance of planning and implementing an inclusive accessible society, inc suitable toileting and changing places, inclusive playgrounds, sport and leisure facilities, public services.

‘It was a real privilege to hear directly from young people across the Commonwealth on the challenges and issues they face as young people with disabilities. I was inspired and moved by their personal journeys and the work they are now doing to seek justice and equality in their home countries. There were lots of important lessons and reflections to take forward to the DFID-hosted Global Disability Summit in July this year’ said Richard Boden (Deputy Team Leader and Summit Policy Lead, Disability Inclusion Team – Department for International Development)

‘The Commonwealth roundtable event, presented young people as change makers who have a clear understanding of the issues which impact them and their peers and solutions to increase disability inclusion, rights and participation for all. We are looking forward to working with disabled youth from across the Commonwealth strengthening their voices and impact on local and global issues including the Global Goals to be achieved by 2030 as well as the Disability Summit taking place this July 2018 in London with DFID. We will be working with our young ambassadors, disabled young activists and partners to establish the Commonwealth Disabled Youth Roundtable as a key component for future CHOMG’s summits.   said Parmi Dheensa – Include Me TOO Executive Director

During Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting they agreed on several issues regarding disability rights and inclusion:

  • Full social, economic and political participation of all including disabled persons recognising it is essential for democracy and sustainable development
  • Quality education and learning guided by the principle to leave no one behind, they agreed to support marginalised groups, which includes children with disabilities to progress through secondary education and training through appropriate policies, advocacy and strategic partnerships.
  • Address the stigma around disability in all its forms ensuring no one is left behind
  • Encouraging all member countries to ratify and implement the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Include Me TOO look forward to continuing working with disabled young people from across the Commonwealth to ensure their voices are heard and the issues which affect them are present on the agendas and discussions encouraging progressive action for disability inclusion and implementation of disabled persons rights.

 

Making the Case Symposium: The Whitworth Friday 25 May 2018

Digital flyer
(Image credit: Rhiannon Davies -Deborah M, Manchester Museum Volunteer)

Venture Arts puts learning disabled people at the heart of culture and heritage and encourages cultural leaders to do the same.

Learning disabled people are taking ownership of culture and heritage places and spaces at the MAKING THE CASE | SYMPOSIUM, taking place at the Grand Hall, the Whitworth Friday May 25th 2018.

Venture Arts invites culture and heritage leaders and representatives to join them as they bring together ten ground-breaking organisations and individuals to share best practice in making our cultural landscape a more rich and welcoming place, with learning disabled people at its heart.

This will be a day of open discussion, debate and sharing to encourage change. Directors, artists, consultants, academics and curators will present their work to support the sector to reflect on and re-evaluate their approach to learning disabled people.

We’ll hear from experts in the field including Actionspace and Royal Academy of Arts (London);
Esther Fox – The History of Place (UK); Bluecoat – Blue Room and Jade French, Art As Advocacy Collective
(Liverpool); Holly Grange, the Whitworth (Manchester); Autism for the Arts (Manchester); Manchester Museum (The University of Manchester); HOME (Manchester) and Royal Exchange Theatre (Manchester).
(Image credit: Rhiannon Davies -Deborah M, Manchester Museum Volunteer)

Films and discussions will take place throughout the day. Delegates will uncover hidden heritage stories with Esther Fox, Head of the Accentuate Programme. She’ll present the groundbreaking Heritage Lottery funded disability project, History of Place, which follows the lives of deaf and disabled people over 800 years, across 8 different national locations.

There will be a chance to gain valuable insight into how creative organisations across the country are helping the cultural and heritage sector to open their doors to learning disabled people.

We’ll hear key success stories from speakers including Sheryll Catto, Co-Director of Actionspace, and Molly Bretton, Access and Communities Manager from Royal Academy of Arts, about their long-running “Friday Afternoon Art Club” partnership project.
Ella Walker, HOME Manchester, will talk to participants from Venture Arts’ Cultural Enrichment Programme about their experiences of this fantastic initiative. She’ll also talk about her own experience of the programme and the incredible impact it’s had on HOME as an organisation.
Ella Walker, Volunteer and Work Based Training Manager, HOME Manchester says: “Hosting the Venture Arts placements last year was a fantastic experience for us at HOME. We learnt so much from David and Liam and it was brilliant to support their exploration of HOME and see their confidence and experiences develop. Creating an annual placement will allow us to support more people to explore HOME and help to lead us in ensuring our venue can be a place for all”

Amanda Sutton, Director, Venture Arts says: “It is such a pleasure to be joined by so many great organisations for our symposium and to be able to show some of the excellent work being done in the sector with disabled people. I am really looking forward to hearing about others’ experiences and to some lively debate. It is timely too as the heritage sector starts to embrace Arts Council England’s Creative Case for Diversity, so it will be a day when we can all work together to start to make culture and heritage more welcoming and inclusive to all.”

Esther Fox, Head of Accentuate says: “Heritage and the arts can change lives and disabled people are leading that change. Whether it’s understanding our heritage and those who have gone before us or creatively reinterpreting historic material to ensure our voices are present. Working in partnership with our leading cultural institutions is providing a platform to spotlight this work.”

Making the Case Symposium marks the completion of the first phase of Venture Arts’ Cultural Enrichment Programme, which was developed in response to how few learning disabled people currently access cultural venues. Supported by national lottery players via the Heritage Lottery Fund, the programme has allowed Venture Arts to work closely with Manchester based museums, theatres and galleries including Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester Museum, the Whitworth, People’s History Museum and HOME Manchester, to co-create engagement programmes tailored to each participant. Several programme participants have since gone on to volunteer within heritage or have been introduced to other initiatives run by cultural venues. As a result, when you go into a cultural space in Manchester, you are now much more likely to see learning disabled people involved in and taking ownership of our shared culture.

The symposium takes place from 10.00am – 4.00pm on Friday 25th May at the
Whitworth. Tickets are on sale now at http://bit.ly/BookMTCSymposium.
www.venturearts.org
Twitter @VentureArts #MTCSymposium | Facebook @VentureArtsManchester |
Instagram @venturearts_
For more information or interviews please contact Kate Royle, mailto:comms@venturearts.org or call on
0161 232 1223

Are you a young person aged 8-18 with a life-limiting/life-threatening impairment (LL/LTI?) Interested in taking part in a two-day Arts Retreat & explore your experiences of disability & try and learn different art forms?

purple patch arts

Are you a young person aged 8-18 with a life-limiting/life-threatening impairment (LL/LTI?) Interested in taking part in a two-day Arts Retreat & explore your experiences of disability & try and learn different art forms?
For more information go to

Art as Advocacy: Inclusive Curating

Art as Advocacy is a recent study exploring inclusive and accessible approaches to curating by learning disabled artists, examining whether curating can be an effective way for this group to communicate collective political concerns out into the public realm. Via a practice-led research approach, it brought together members of self-advocacy group Halton Speak Out and members of Bluecoat’s inclusive arts project Blue Room, to curate a visual arts exhibition titled Auto Agents. These curators developed an exhibition theme, collaborated with artists, commissioned new artwork and designed accessible interpretation for audiences. This attention to the curatorial process resulted in curating not only becoming more usable by more people, but also more transparent and rigorous. By achieving this, this research delineates to understanding the processes and practices by which our cultural spaces can be democratised
This research is now featured on a website  alongside an archive of project material. Together with the thesis text, the website contains images, videos, transcripts, plans and hyperlinks illuminating the inclusive and participatory approaches underpinning the action-research project.​ Over time, additional resources, publications and a summary video will be added to this website. Please check back for updates. If you have questions or would like further information please contact Dr Jade French via j.french2@leeds.ac.uk
Link to websitewww.artasadvocacy.co.uk

Event: BDA: Promoting Neurodiversity in the Workplace: Networking for Success!

British Dyslexia Association

Date: 28th June 2018, 9.30am – 4pm

Venue:  BRE, Bucknalls Lane, Watford, WD25 9NH  (There is limited parking onsite)

Information about this informative event:
The British Dyslexia Association with Dyslexia Science, Engineering and Technology, are delighted to announce an Adult Conference and Organisational Member’s Day, hosted by BRE.  All are welcome to this informative day!

This conference will explore how individuals can celebrate and accentuate their Neurodiverse talents and explore how those in the workplace can develop Neurodiverse friendly practices.

Our experts include so far:

  • Margaret Malpas, MBE, Vice-President of the BDA. and author of  “Self Fulfilment with Dyslexia: A Blueprint for Success”. Margaret will present on Networking for Success!
  • Katherine Hewlett from Achievability, presenting on Westminster Achievability Commission Report on Dyslexia and Recruitment.
  • Joanne Gregory, BDA Quality Mark Manager will present on The Dyslexia Friendly Workplace and the Dyslexia Aware Award for employers.
  • Aidan Ridyard: Successful and renowned Architect, Aidan will explore how his journey with dyslexia has evolved throughout his life and professional career, his talk ‘Volere Volare… To want to fly’ celebrates positive dyslexia and will be truly inspirational!
  • Masterclass on ‘Neurodiversity and Assessment in the workplace’: This session will give an overview on creating a neurodiverse working environment and will address the procedures around assessing for dyslexia, a fantastic overview of the key issues.

Sensing Culture Conference: Tuesday 1 May 2018 (sold out)

Sensing-Culture
Sensing Culture Conference
Tuesday 1 May 2018, Trinity House, London
Cost: Free
Sensing Culture is a Heritage Lottery Fund funded project. It has been working with blind and partially sighted people to open up heritage at museums, landmarks, archives and collections.
 
The project will conclude on Tuesday 1st May 2018 at the Sensing Culture Conference. The free Conference is aimed at those interested in making museums and heritage sites more accessible for blind and partially sighted people. Attendees will be able to find out the successes, challenges and learnings from the project. The event will:
 
•           Bring together like-minded people who share the same goal of making museums, heritage sites, and
the heritage sector more accessible  
•           Showcase good practice from across the museum/heritage sector, including the Sensing Culture project
•           Get you thinking about what you can do
•           Highlight future opportunities
 
There will be a wide range of talks and workshops from people involved in the Sensing Culture project. The keynote speakers for the day are Liz Ellis & Caroline George (Heritage Lottery Fund) and Simon Hayhoe (University of Bath). More speakers will be announced shortly.
 
It will also be the first chance to preview the new Sensing Culture website. The website will be a one stop shop for information and guidance on making museums, heritage sites, and the heritage sector more accessible.
 
Sensing Culture has been led by the Royal National Institute of the Blind. It has been delivered with the support of several prestigious heritage organisations, including a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 
The partners of Sensing Culture are:
•           Oxford University Museums and Collections led by Oxford Museum of Natural History
•           The Canterbury Cluster (Beaney House of Art and Knowledge, Canterbury Library and
Canterbury Cathedral)
•           Lewes Castle in Sussex, part of the Sussex Archaeological Society
•           Arthur Conan Doyle Collection, Richard Lancelyn Green Bequest in Portsmouth,
part of Portsmouth Council and Libraries
 

Sensing Culture aims to increase the independence of blind and partially sighted visitors, professionals, artists, and volunteers. This is by training staff and volunteers at the partner heritage sites and implementing practical solutions. In support of this, interaction at these sites has been increased and meaningful learning experiences created. This has included using technology, audio description and tactile panels.

 

New Report launched (28 March) from Westminster Commission on Autism

Disability Co-operative Network

This new report was launched on 28 March and in collaboration with autistic people, organisations and charities in relation to fake cures often distributed on social media.  These ‘cures’ are rightfully causing concern so the Westminster Commission on Autism has produced a short report on recommendations to Government to support people and families.
Link to the report is here: https://t.co/yGZCyrnGmr

 

Report Launch: Neurodiverse voices: Opening Doors to Employment – WACReport

achieveability logo

This is a groundbreaking report by the Westminster AchieveAbility Commission.  We are proud to be associated and quoted with this important report for all sectors but particularly for us the Heritage, Arts and Cultural Sector.  It is also very timely with the recent release of which is timely to the ‘Making A Shift Report: Disabled people and the Arts and Cultural Sector Workforce in England: Understanding trends, barriers and
opportunities.’

Link to the full WAC report is here: http://www.achieveability.org.uk/main/policy/wac-report-is-released

NEWS RELEASE Monday 22nd January 2018

REPORT LAUNCH

Neurodiverse Voices:Opening Doors to Employment

Ground-breaking report on systemic barriers to employment

A ground-breaking report is being launched TODAY on Monday January 22nd by the Westminster AchieveAbility Commission (WAC) and then released into the public domain.

Over the period of a year, WAC has gathered evidence on systemic barriers to employment for millions of potential employees who are neurodivergent (i.e. dyslexic, dyspraxic, autistic and/or with Attention Deficit Disorder). This significant study from the Westminster AchieveAbility Commission on Recruitment is aligned with the government’s stated aim of increasing the number of people with disabilities in employment, set out in the Improving Lives Green Paper (2016) and Command Paper (2017). There could be no better time to highlight the abilities and workplace support needs of the large neurodivergent population and point to better recruitment and retention practices, for the benefit of the national economy.

The resulting data has highlighted a widespread lack of awareness, failures in government support and workplace discrimination – but also many examples of good practice as most neurodivergent people are able and skilled – it is recruitment processes that disable them. All of this has fed into the Commission’s report.
The report launch on January 22nd will be followed by a second event, also in Westminster, on Thursday 25th
to celebrate the creativity of the neurodivergent community.

WAC recommendations include widespread awareness training, accessibility of written employment information and an end to inappropriate testing as part of the selection process. We call for the improvement of government support programmes and disability initiatives.

HEADLINES FROM THE REPORT

  • 43% of survey respondents felt discouraged from applying by job application
    processes.
  • 52% claimed to have experienced discrimination during interview or selection
    processes.
  • 73% did not disclose their condition during interview – of those that did, 58%
    regretted it, feeling this led to discrimination.
  • On-line job applications which don’t allow assistive technology and use of spellcheckers bar neurodivergent applicants from accessing jobs.
  • Employers are breaking the law (Equality Act 2010) when they fail to implement reasonable adjustments for disabled people

QUOTATIONS FROM THE REPORT
“My first few staff reports started with the words “this officer will never be suitable for promotion as he is dyslexic.”
“Employers cannot make reasonable adjustments if they do not begin from the premise of acceptance.”
“All psychometric tests are impossible for me, however in many cases I know I would be very good at the job and that these test don’t reflect my capabilities.”

Call For Abstracts: Founding a Community of Practice for Sensing Culture Through Inclusive Capital

Sensing-Culture

Founding a Community of Practice for Sensing Culture Through Inclusive Capital

Monday 26th – Tuesday 27th March 2018

University of Bath, Somerset, UK

Background to the Symposium

Sensing Culture is a Heritage Lottery Fund funded project that enables blind and partially sighted people to increase their independence through visiting heritage sites and museums. Sensing Culture is led by CultureLink South East, which is a partnership led by the Royal National Institute of the Blind with the support of a number of prestigious heritage organisations, including a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and will conclude in April 2018.

Sensing Culture aims to increase independence by training staff and volunteers at partner heritage sites, so these stakeholders understand the impact of sight loss. This training focuses on ways of supporting visitors and positive learning experiences.

Amongst the methods of supporting visitors who are blind and visually impaired, technology, audio description and tactile panels are used to make sites more interactive.

The five external partners for Sensing Culture are:

  • Oxford University Museums
  • The Canterbury Cluster (Canterbury Museums and Galleries, Canterbury Library and Canterbury Cathedral)
  • Lewes Castle in Sussex, part of the Sussex Archaeological Society
  • The Conan Doyle Collection in Portsmouth, part of Portsmouth Council and Libraries
  • The Royal Pavilion and Museums across Brighton and Hove

The Theme

The theme of the symposium is founding a community of practice to engage professionals, volunteers and visitors who are blind and partially sighted to develop more inclusive heritage sites. The symposium will include the launch of a website based at the University of Bath, UK, which will host the community of practice.

Through discussion, presentations of good-practice, and critical engagement with barriers to inclusion, the community of practice will provide a legacy for Sensing Culture beyond 2018. We would therefore particularly like to engage with people who can contribute to this community of practice.

The symposium will work to develop inclusive capital in cultural heritage sites. Inclusive capital can be described as a sense of inclusion in cultural heritage sites, which is gained in four stages:

  • The first stage in this cycle is connecting and bonding with a network of people
  • The second stage is learning through networks
  • The third stage is collecting information that leads to access or knowledge through learning
  • The fourth stage is physical and virtual access to spaces and places where we can learn and gather new information, such as visiting or attending cultural institutions

Call for Abstracts

Your abstract should be brief and a maximum of 100 words – preferably fewer – and should include the theme of developing inclusion, that can form inclusive capital. Examples of presentations could be:

  • a project you have designed or run in a heritage site
  • findings from an evaluation of a project
  • experiences of visiting exhibits as a blind or visually impaired person
  • initial or substantial findings from research

We are particularly interested in receiving brief abstracts from people who are:

  • people who are blind or partially sighted with experience of museums
  • museum managers, administrators, professionals and volunteers
  • academics and students studying museum access
  • teachers (either in a museum or who engages with museums as part of your teaching)

The presentations will be 15-20 minutes, and incorporate 10-15 minute discussions. We particularly welcome on-going projects that can be enhanced through a discussion at the symposium.

The abstracts will be published on paper and on the new community of practice website. If the presenter wishes, we will also publish their presentation or a paper outlining their presentation on the website. We are also preparing a proposal for a special issue of a journal, and papers can also be considered for this special issue, if the author(s) so wish.

Abstracts should be emailed to s.j.hayhoe@bath.ac.uk and submitted by February 14th 2018.

 

University of Bath

NEWS RELEASE 15 January 2018: Neurodiverse Voices: Opening Doors to Employment

achieveability logo

Ground-breaking report on systemic barriers to employment

A ground-breaking report is being launched on Monday January 22nd by the Westminster AchieveAbility Commission (WAC) and then released into the public domain.
Over the period of a year, WAC has gathered evidence on systemic barriers to employment for millions of potential employees who are neurodivergent (i.e. dyslexic, dyspraxic, autistic and/or with Attention Deficit Disorder).

This significant study from the Westminster AchieveAbility Commission on Recruitment is aligned with the government’s stated aim of increasing the number of people with disabilities in employment, set out in the Improving Lives Green Paper (2016) and Command Paper (2017). There could be no better time to highlight the abilities and workplace support needs of the large neurodivergent population and point to better recruitment and retention practices, for the benefit of the national economy.

The resulting data has highlighted a widespread lack of awareness, failures in government support and workplace discrimination – but also many examples of good practice as most neurodivergent people are able and skilled – it is recruitment processes that disable them. All of this has fed into the Commission’s report.

The report launch on January 22nd will be followed by a second event, also in Westminster, on Thursday 25th to celebrate the creativity of the neurodivergent community.

WAC recommendations include widespread awareness training, accessibility of written employment information and an end to inappropriate testing as part of the selection process. We call for the improvement of government support programmes and disability initiatives.

HEADLINES FROM THE REPORT

  • 43% of survey respondents felt discouraged from applying by job application processes.
  • 52% claimed to have experienced discrimination during interview or selection processes.
  • 73% did not disclose their condition during interview – of those that did, 58% regretted it, feeling this led to discrimination.
  • On-line job applications which don’t allow assistive technology and use of spellcheckers bar neurodivergent applicants from accessing jobs.
  • Employers are breaking the law (Equality Act 2010) when they fail to implement reasonable adjustments for disabled people.

QUOTATIONS FROM THE REPORT

“My first few staff reports started with the words “this officer will never be suitable for promotion as he is dyslexic.”
“Employers cannot make reasonable adjustments if they do not begin from the premise of acceptance.”
“All psychometric tests are impossible for me, however in many cases I know I would be very good at the job and that these test don’t reflect my capabilities.”

WAC Media Release 2018

Oral History Training/Volunteering opportunity: History of Place Project

History of Place is offering a day of oral history training at M Shed Bristol on 30th January, followed by flexible opportunities to volunteer until April, taking oral histories of disabled people in Bristol.

Full details here:

http://historyof.place/events/train-with-a-professional-from-the-oral-history-society/

Do pass this on to people who might like to take part – everyone is welcome, and we hope participants will pick up some useful transferable skills.

There’s also a HOP newsletter, which will carry events and further exhibition openings over the next few months – you can sign up at the top or bottom of the page here: http://historyof.place/events/

Community Panel – volunteer opportunity

Staffordshire County Council

Staffordshire Museum is looking for enthusiastic people to help us to develop a new exhibition around the theme of ‘Childhood’. This community panel will work with us to create a fun, exciting and interesting exhibition for diverse audiences across Staffordshire.

You can learn about the museum and the fantastic objects in our collection and have the chance to work with museum staff and a professional designer.  As the exhibition develops there will be the opportunity to get involved in different areas such as research, display and marketing.

We would meet approximately once a month from November 2017-July 2018.

If you want to find out more please get in touch with Natalie at natalie.heidaripour@staffordshire.gov.uk.

Community panel flyer

NEWS Update: Westminster AchieveAbility Commission (WAC) on recruitment and neurodivergence

For World Dyslexia Day (5 October) and Dyslexia Awareness Week (2 – 8 October), Westminster AchieveAbility Commission (WAC) have produced a media release which has important information for dyslexic and other neurodiverse adults in the workplace.

The Media Release outlines the key findings of the two WAC surveys and the four evidence sessions and flags up the fuller report to be launched in January 2018.  The full report will outline a series of recommendations in line with the key findings.

WAC Media Release 2017

For further information regarding the work of WAC please see http://bit.ly/2yX1sK5