Take Back the City had a great meeting with members of Inclusion London- the Deaf and Disabled People's Organisation's Forum. Members from different Deaf and Disabled People's Organisations from across London shared their experience of disability in London, their ideas for change and their demands for our People's Manifesto.
It didn't take long for the issue of London's public transport to come up. Whilst tubes and trains may feel like a nightmare for all us of, the experience is much worse for Deaf and Disabled Londoners. An example given was that when there are delays on the tube, an announcement is often made over the tannoy as to what is going on and how long it will take to resolve. Yet this means deaf people are left in the dark as to what is going on. TfL have got rid of dozens of tickets offices, but many disabled people can't use ticket machines.
Representation of Deaf and Disabled People in politics was also a key, reaccuring theme. Whilst there might be meetings where disabled people are asked their views on government ideas or policies, a Deaf member complained that this never amounted to anything accept tokenism, or the illusion that Deaf and Disabled People had been consulted. Instead, there should be a Board of Deaf and Disabled People with a budget, that sits inside the Greater London Authortiy who can advice on decision making around Deaf and Disabled People's services.
Other key demands included:
-Consideration of accessibility in everything: the NHS/booking a doctor, transport, decision-making, the party Manifestos
-A real London Living Wage that really is enough to live a good life on. This should be paid to care and support workers to help stop the shortage of people in this work.
-Communal social housing, so people can offer peer support to each other, rather than being isolated