Disability day of action

Day of action for disability equality in education: 21 November 2018

During Disability History Month 2018 (22 November - 22 December), UCU held its first day of action for disability equality in education which kicked off our action for Disability History Month 2018.

Initiated by UCU's Disabled Members' Standing Committee, the day of action is all about organising against discrimination and will focus on the challenges and barriers faced by disabled people in education. 

This is an inclusive campaign. We have built a coalition of organisations to work together. In particular especially our sister unions at our institutions - NEU, UNITE, UNISON and NUS—but also we are working with the TUC disabled members committee, Disabled People against the Cuts & Alliance For inclusive Education. The day culminated in a meeting in parliament.


Read our Disability Day of Action briefing [62kb] on the following four priority areas:   

  1. time limits for the implementation of reasonable adjustments
  2. a review of building regulations to ensure they meet the accessibility needs of disabled people
  3. a statutory right to disability leave
  4. the right for disabled people to access mainstream education and a reversal of cuts to SEND provision.

As part of this campaign, we are asking you to write to your MP on improving equality for disabled staff and students in education in the above areas.  Order your postcards by emailing eqadmin@ucu.org.uk

Disability Day of Action [757kb]


Show your support: take a selfie with one of our posters and post using the hashtag #IncludeUs and Tweet your support to @UCUequality


Nothing about us without us!

On the day of action UCU worked with Marsha De Cordova the Labour Shadow for Disabled People, to host a parliamentary meeting to speak with cross-party MPs on improving equality for disabled staff in education. UNISON, UNITE, NEU, NUS, TUC, DPAC & ALFIE were all involved.  As part of this meeting, we called for:

  • time limits for the implementation of reasonable adjustments
  • a review of building regulations to ensure they meet the accessibility needs of disabled people

  • a statutory right to disability leave

  • the right for disabled people to access mainstream education and a reversal of cuts to SEND provision.

Getting involved

Posters
Disability equality stats [67kb] 
Day of action poster 1 [196kb]
Day of action poster 2 [231kb]
Day of action poster 3 [226kb]
Day of action poster 4 [165kb]

Members and branches are encouraged to continue to raise awareness of disability discrimination (e.g. lack of physical access, refusal of reasonable adjustments & disability leave) and to work with institutions and student union groups for increased participation and improvement of disability rights within structures, employment and access to support and services. We hope that by increasing organisation around disability discrimination we will have fewer members needing support in casework in the future and more disabled members involved and active in our branches.

Branches are encouraged to undertake any activity that encapsulates highlighting the challenges and barriers faced by disabled people, as well as the gains made, especially during Disability History Month (19 November - 22 December) and our day of action on 21 November.

Below we have outlined a few suggestions to help get the ball rolling! This includes but is not limited to:

1.  Displaying the UCU disability wall chart

2.  Hosting a meeting to discuss how branches can work alongside the institutions and campus unions and student groups to see how best disabled staff and students can be supported by:

  • involving and inviting disabled people to speak on workplace issues
  • devising an action plan of how branches can work toward raising awareness and challenge the barriers faced by disabled people
  • watch our film discussing the social model of disability and discuss how branches can adopt the social model of disability (https://youtu.be/Do6U1j1vRYU)
  • discuss how branches can challenge negative stereotypes and promote positive images of disabled people
  • establish a disabled worker network.

3.  Our social media element of the campaign, on 21 November, aims to get as many members as possible to show support in a simple, quick and effective way. Download and take a photograph with our range of selfie posters (see below) or make your own and tweet your support to @UCUequality using the hashtag #IncludeUs

  • complete and tweet the following statement 'I am supporting UCU's Day of Action for Disabled People because...'
  • help to get the hashtag #IncludeUs trending on twitter!
  • encourage colleagues to write on our 'see the person' downloadable poster the attitudes, barriers or challenges they face daily as a disabled person; or, as a non-disabled person, that they see disabled people face. 

Selfie poster: See the Person [367kb]
Selfie poster: See the Person [56kb]

Selfie poster: Supporting the campaign [474kb]
Selfie poster: Supporting the campaign [40kb]

Selfie poster: Campaign poster [76kb]
Selfie poster: Campaign poster [47kb]

You can find our disability equality resources here.

Branches can let us know what activity they will be doing as part of this campaign by sending an email to eqadmin@ucu.org.uk with details, pictures, etc.

Last updated: 5 December 2018