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.

 

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

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.

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

 

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

PRESS RELEASE: Disabled anglers now able to fly fish for trout on Draycote Reservoir ~ The Wheelyboat Trust

The Wheelyboat Trust Logo

Release date: 7 April 2017

The first wheelchair accessible Coulam 16 Wheelyboat at Draycote Reservoir in Warwickshire will be launched on Wednesday 12 April, following a successful fundraising campaign supported by Draycote Fly-Fishers Association and led by one of its members.  An established trout fishery for many years, Draycote Reservoir is a 600-acre lowland reservoir near Rugby famous for its buzzer hatches and large grown-on brown and rainbow trout.

Designed and developed by The Wheelyboat Trust and JM Coulam Boatbuilders, the Coulam 16 Wheelyboat stems from the fundamental desire of disabled anglers and wheelchair users in particular, to have the same opportunities to fish as the able-bodied.  The boat is based on Jim Coulam’s 16’ reservoir fishing boat design and has been adapted to provide wheelchair users with step free access on board.  With an open cockpit and level floor throughout, the disabled angler can choose to sit at the bow or the stern and is able to drive and operate the boat quite independently.

The unique design features of the boat are not immediately obvious, making it a thoroughly enjoyable experience for disabled anglers.  Wheelchair users board the Coulam 16 Wheelyboat via a ramp from a pontoon onto a hydraulic platform that lowers to floor level.  Removable handrails around the platform help keep the angler secure and simplify the boarding and disembarking procedure, which means that only one able-bodied helper is required for assistance.  The boat has a 6’ beam, low centre of gravity and is very stable.  In normal conditions wheelchair brakes are sufficient to hold the angler in place, but D-rings on the floor provide secure strapping points when required.

The project cost £9,200 and was funded by the Janet Nash Charitable Settlement, Draycote Fly-Fishers Association and their members, and Fishery Management (UK) Ltd which has been running the fishery on Draycote since 2011.

Andy Beadsley, Director of The Wheelyboat Trust, says “Angling is an activity that most disabled people can participate in very successfully given the right access and equipment.  Our Wheelyboats overcome all the difficulties of accessing waters like Draycote and we are delighted that Ifor and his team have become the latest fishery to operate a Wheelyboat.  This is the 180th Wheelyboat to be launched and is a particularly proud moment for me being the 100th Wheelyboat launched since I took over as Director in 2002.”

The Wheelyboat Trust relies on the support of individuals, companies and charitable organisations to fund its activities. Donations can be made in a variety of ways including online atwww.wheelyboats.org/donate.html.

-ENDS-

 

Media Contacts

Jane Bevan or Jana Fickerova, Firebird Public Relations

T: 01235 835297 / 07977 459 547

E: jb@firebirdpr.co.uk / jf@firebirdpr.co.uk

 

About accessible angling

  • The need for accessible fishing boats has come about by the inaccessible nature of reservoirs, lakes, ponds and rivers to wheelchair users and others with mobility problems: the banks are often steep and unmade and where there is access, it may be limited and offer little opportunity to fish the water effectively.
  • Fluctuating water levels, the norm on most reservoirs, make the problems of access even worse.  Standard boats have not been designed to accommodate wheelchair users and are very difficult to get into.  Once on board the disabled angler is usually totally reliant on a boat partner.
  • Whichever Wheelyboat model is preferred (the Trust currently supplies four models – two purpose-built fishing boats and two multi-purpose models including a 12 seater inshore powerboat), Wheelyboats overcome all the difficulties. They make the entire water accessible, are simplicity itself to board and the level floor provides access throughout thus giving the disabled user the dignity of their own independence.  Wheelyboats enable disabled people to participate in waterborne activities alongside and on equal terms with their able-bodied counterparts.
  • Fishing has many charms and where suitable facilities are provided, such as at Draycote Reservoir, it is an activity that most disabled people can participate in very effectively.

 

About The Wheelyboat Trust

  • The Wheelyboat Trust is a registered charity dedicated to providing mobility impaired people, young and old, with the opportunity and freedom to participate in waterborne activities all over the UK.  Its role is to help and encourage venues open to the public to acquire Wheelyboats for their disabled visitors and to help groups and organisations acquire Wheelyboats for their own use.
  • The Wheelyboat Trust was founded in 1984 when it was originally called the Handicapped Anglers Trust.  The first Wheelyboat built received its official launch from HRH Prince Charles at Fishmongers’ Hall in London.  In 2004, the charity was renamed The Wheelyboat Trust to reflect its broader aims and the clear need for Wheelyboats beyond the fishing lake for disabled, elderly and infirm, families and community groups for recreation and sporting pursuits.
  • The Trust has designed 7 different Wheelyboat models since its work began in 1984: Mk I, Mk II, Mk III, Mk IV, Coulam 15, Coulam 16 and Coulam Wheelyboat V20.  180 Wheelyboats have so far been supplied across the UK, Ireland and Denmark.
  • For more information, visit www.wheelyboats.org

About Draycote Reservoir Trout Fishery

  • The fishery is within easy access of the M1, M6, M40 and M45
  • 32 boats all with outboards are available giving access to Draycote’s 600 acres and its famed shoals (underwater islands).
  • Anglers fishing from a drifting boat, fishing a team of dries or buzzers over and around the shoals, will experience the finest top of the water fly fishing any midlands reservoir has to offer.
  • Draycote is a popular competition venue with many clubs and associations enjoying its excellent fishing and facilities.
  • The team at Draycote feel passionate about their sport and are keen to encourage other anglers into fly fishing, or if required, to try and improve their knowledge. Visit the website’s Guiding/Tuition pagefor further details or call 01788 812018.
  • Fishery Management (UK) Ltd is owned by Ifor Jones and runs the fishing at Thornton, Foremark, Draycote and Eyebrook reservoirs.
  • For more information, visit www.flyfishdraycote.co.uk

 

About J M Coulam Boatbuilders

  • Established for 24 years, they are one of the largest small boat builders in the UK having designed and built over 1,000 commercial boats.
  • Specialising in small day hire boats, they have expanded with help from The Wheelyboat Trust into larger commercial craft.
  • All boats are individually built in GRP to customer’s own specification.
  • Their own engineering and stainless steel fabrication shop allows them to custom make fittings and components and almost everything else.
  • They supply custom built trailers for all types of applications and are a leading floating pontoon manufacturer.