When Sue Hubbert (our Disabilities Officer) attended the 2018 Labour Party Conference, she was concerned that there was no representation or mention of people with learning disabilities despite Labour’s aims to be “for the many” and to promote inclusion. Sue decided this situation needed to change for the 2019 Conference in Brighton, and here’s her mission:
The voices of people with learning disabilities need to be heard. They are being rendered more and more invisible as a result of austerity and, when it comes to public policy and provision, are often now lumped together under headings such as ‘disability’ or ‘mental health’ which fail to represent them adequately.
Funding cuts have meant that the lives of many adults with a learning disability have worsened in recent years. Those living with their families have become more dependent on family support as other services have fallen away; those living in homes of their own have become more isolated as support services and funding have been reduced; and those wanting homes of their own have been less able to access them due to the lack of development of social housing and to stigma and rising rents in the private sector.
But people with learning disabilities have hopes, dreams and ideas just like the rest of us. They and their families can also vote. It is time they were provided with a platform at Labour’s Conference to talk about their lives and needs and interact with politicians who can make changes happen.
With the support and generosity of our dedicated members and a successful crowdfunding campaign, we ran FOUR events at the 2019 Labour Party Conference in Brighton, ensuring the voices of people with learning disabilities and their carers were heard by politicians and activists.
- a workshop with the Brighton “Being Heard in Government” group
- a lunch and discussion with Cafe Domenica
- a workshop with Brighton Carousel
- a performance of “We Want it All” a play commissioned by Wimbledon Labour Party and devised and performed by The Baked Bean Company, a group of actors with learning disabilities.