Individuals and communities
Identifying and addressing barriers
The key to making society truly equal, inclusive, and diverse, is to identify, acknowledge and address the societal barriers which prevent this from happening. As a Deaf and Disabled People’s Organisation providing services for the wider community, we are ideally placed to learn from individuals and communities who are facing these barriers. We are always looking for ways to make our services more accessible and inclusive to everyone. We are well-connected with other voluntary organisations and alliances who can also make change happen.
Individual and collective barriers
All our services for individuals and communities tackle issues around equality, inclusion, and diversity.
Some of our projects, such as Touchpoint Peer Support, help individual disabled clients to overcome specific barriers or provide help on topics such as benefits advice.
Others, like the Healthy Heart Peer Project, work to towards equality for whole communities; in this case for Black, Caribbean, and South-Asian communities at high risk of heart disease, who may experience barriers to health advice and support. Also, all members of the Healthy Heart team are both disabled and from the Global Majority. It is this combination of representation and lived experience which enables us to effectively identify and support global majority communities, who often experience multiple disadvantages through intersectionality.
Accessibility in practice
Many of our accessibility practices are in place all the time, regardless of who we’re working with e.g., we always use inclusive language, work with accessible technology, and provide flexibility on working hours and locations (where appropriate).
We also make specific reasonable adjustments for staff and clients where required (and within the funding and resources available to us). Examples of this may include providing an interpreter, adjusting sensory aspects like the lighting in meeting rooms, or giving self-descriptions when we introduce ourselves in meetings.