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Access: I Can’t See You, But You Should See Me

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  • Angela Hart, in reply to Sacha,

    Many of us do know and feel under-appreciated but don't want to risk the blind having this concession removed. Most disabled people face higher costs of living which are not covered by the disability allowance, but just have to get on with it.

    The same problem exists with the discrepancies between provision under ACC and that under MOH, there's always the risk that Government will take services down to the lower level instead of doing the right thing. Cost is the first consideration not fairness or need.

    How can we get disabled people better represented in the mainstream media? All the media seems to think about when the word "disabled " is mentioned is "human interest" story. Actually it's almost a whole different world that most able bodied people don't notice and don't understand. "Attitude" does show aspects of this, incidental to the person's story.

    The whole country should be up in arms over the proposal to allow building owners to upgrade for earthquakes without bothering about access for people with mobility problems. The existing legislation allows building owners an out if making the building accessible is likely to be costly or very difficult. There's really no need for any further concession, the extra cost incurred for accessibility is minimal, or the owner uses the existing out clause. So why this outrageous idea that it's okay to lock people out of public buildings ?

    People in general have no idea how frustrating it can be for anyone who can't manage steps. The extra distance you have to travel, the frustration with long winding ramps when everyone else has a quick route; especially when it's wet. Booking into a so- called accessible motel room to find the step to get in the door is impassable. And so it goes on, but most able-bodied people are unaware of the problems because they don't have mobility impaired friends, although eventually age takes its toll and they begin to realise.
    I hadn't understood how marginalised we are until I realised that the benefit I survived on for nearly 6 years was more than $200 less than 40 hours at minimum wage, which is currently considered to be too low to live on.

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2014 • 614 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Angela Hart,

    don't want to risk the blind having this concession removed


    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Angela Hart,

    How can we get disabled people better represented in the mainstream media?

    After years of lobbying, there's a $1,000,000 per year government investment in exactly that. Perhaps we could ask them to do a guest post to explain how they've chosen to invest that money on behalf of all New Zealanders.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Angela Hart,

    Ah, I had a look at this site. It lists all the recipients of funding since establishment and gives details of the schemes. Apart from the courses aimed at encouraging people with disabilities to interact with the media, I didn't notice much emphasis on that particular goal- getting disabled people better represented in the media. It seems more about inclusion and promoting activities which have the potential to get media coverage. However, I need to look at the site in more depth, this is just a first impression.

    Personally I've tried to get media coverage about one scheme which affects people with disabilities, because it is an election year and therefore an opportunity to encourage more rapid improvement then would otherwise be the case. I've had some success but probably cannot keep the issue in the public mind for very long, which is what is needed. That's partly because my family would be negatively impacted if I personally went public, so the human interest can't be provided by me. If you don't want to publicise your own predicament or put family or friends in the spotlight, it's much more difficult to get your issue into the media.
    I'd really like to see a brickbats and bouquets type column in the Herald, featuring the good things happening and the problems cropping up for the disabled community. Such a column might have featured the problems with the Morningside railway crossing before the serious accident occurred, it might tell the Council which pathways need attention most urgently, it might highlight the positives such as free entry for wheelchair users and their carers to selected rugby matches at Eden Park. It might sell more copies of the paper as there would be an expectation of something of special interest to this sector of the community.

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2014 • 614 posts Report

  • BDB Inc, in reply to Angela Hart,

    Just need to point out that most disabled ACC claimants get removed from ACC books and are MOH.
    The humiliation , pain and suffering ACC bestow on it's disabled claimant's before it turfs them to MOH is exceptional. Please don't separate people into born disabled and disabled from an accident/ event. We are all people, our community is ALL people not a "disabled" community.
    The contentment of all people should be the govt function . If the UN CRPWD was taken seriously by the govt (and enforced by the courts) all people would have safe mobility and access needs met. In a healthy society that did not separate people with labels we would not be having this conversation. Imagine the public indignation if one day you physically stopped people from walking downtown or going to events based on their hair color.

    Since Apr 2014 • 61 posts Report

  • BDB Inc, in reply to ,

    Direct healthcare provision is better, ACC abuse many sensitive injury claimants. Why the govt call rape or sexual abuse an accident goes beyond my understanding.

    No people needing help/assistance should have to go through a corporation for healthcare or needs.
    No barriers should be there. "Help" even costs more going thru ACC,.

    Since Apr 2014 • 61 posts Report

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