Set up to raise awareness of invisible disabilities and empower people with hidden disabilities.
The blog will post from a variety of writers on their experience of living with a hidden disability and the barriers they face in their life.
In doing so it is hoped that this will empower people with invisible disabilities to feel more confident in asking for adjustments.
It aims to also raise awareness among the general population to broaden their understandings of disability and challenge discrimination they witness.
“You’re disabled under the Equality Act 2010 if you have a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on your ability to do normal daily activities.”- UK Government definition of disability
By ‘invisible disabilities’ I am talking about a range of conditions that affect a persons day-to-day life, however might not be immediately ‘visible’ or recognised by mainstream societies understandings of disability.
The Disability Rights Movement in the UK and around the world has come a huge way and there are a vast number of laws protecting our equal rights. However there is still an understanding of disability in society as something which can be seen with obvious mobility aids, for example, wheelchair users.
But this is a very limited view, the majority of disabled people in the UK have disabilities that cannot be immediately be seen. Furthermore, many disabled people who do use mobility aids, often have further invisible disabilities.
Some examples of invisible disabilities- Arthritis, Diabetes, Epilepsy, Functional Neurological Disorders, Auto-Immune Disorders, Autism, Learning Disabilities, Mental Health conditions etc.
“But you don’t look disabled!”
It is my belief and experience that often people with invisible disabilities experience a huge amount of stigma and negative experience when asking for reasonable adjustments or the removal of barriers they experience in society.
This means that often a huge number of disabled people are confronted by further barriers in their daily lives and are therefore being denied their rights to be independent and equal in society.
Image description: “Some disabilities look like this” with three pictures of common signs to represent disability- a person with a cane being helped; a wheelchair user; A person using crutches. Next line reads “Some look like this”- with an image of a simple person standing straight up.