UK Disability History Month

Access: How far have we come? How far have we to go?

UK Disability History Month (UKDHM) is an annual event with the aim to promote disabled people’s rights and their struggle for equality now and in the past. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the establishment of UKDHM, which will take place from the evening of 18th November until Friday 18th December 2020.

Every year, UKDHM has focussed on a different theme and this year the emphasis is on access: how far have we come and how far have we to go?

With this theme, we are looking to understand the importance of the struggles of disabled people for access, the human rights principle of access for disabled people and applying universal design to environmental, communication, educational, occupational and organisational issues to minimise barriers to disabled people and maximise their participation.

The New Disability Toolkit

A range of information and resources relating to disability have been compiled into several toolkit webpages to support and inform. 

These resources have been handpicked by our Staff With Disabilities Network with help from the University Disability Services Team.

Access the Disability Toolkit

Our library team's top titles

Our fantastic library team have compiled a diverse and interesting collection of books and eBooks to mark UK Disability History Month 2020.

We would like to invite you to peruse this thought provoking range of titles, which can be found on display on Level 1 of the Charles Seale-Hayne Library from 18th November 2020 as well as on the Library UK Disability History Month page.

A Disability History Timeline: The struggle for equal rights through the ages  

The NHS North West’s Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights team have produced a comprehensive timeline documenting how attitudes towards disability have differed (or not) through the ages and across cultures. It also marks the contribution of individuals and groups to advancements in health and social care in relation to disability, and highlights legal and other landmarks in the struggles towards equal rights for disabled people.    

View the Disability History Timeline

Neurodiversity, Capitalism and Socialism

Janine Booth is a workplace trade union representative and Co-Chair of the TUC Disabled Workers' Committee. She is autistic, has an autistic son and is a walking advertisement for autism in the workplace.

In this 18-minute illustrated talk, first posted in November 2018, Janine looks at what the experience of autistic, dyslexic and other neurodivergent people is under capitalism, what socialism can offer and how we get there.

Listen to Neurodiversity, Capitalism and Socialism

BBC Radio 4: What If Everyone Was Disabled?

“Every single day, I’m reminded of my disability. Yeah, it doesn’t stop me from doing much… but the reminders are always there.”

Mat Fraser – writer, actor, rights activist, thalidomide survivor – isn’t afraid to challenge, to provoke and to ask awkward questions. Sometimes he allows his imagination to run riot. In this programme, he wonders how different things might be if the vast majority of people, rather than the minority, had a disability and assesses how far we’ve come with accessibility and inclusivity, particularly in the last two decades, as well as considering what’s stopping us from going further. Money, power, politics, legislation and technology all play their part, but what about social attitudes towards disability? 

Listen to What If Everyone Was Disabled