Women de­bate dis­abil­ity

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Front Page - Jes­sica Nico

DE­SPITE the best ef­forts of or­gan­i­sa­tions such as DADAA, peo­ple living with dis­abil­i­ties are still marginalised in the work­force.

Dis­abil­ity in the Arts, Dis­ad­van­tage in the Arts WA chair­woman He­len Er­ring­ton said it was women with dis­abil­i­ties who found it the hard­est.

A fo­rum to dis­cuss the is­sue is on in Vic­to­ria Park at Vis­Abil­ity on Thurs­day.

“Women with dis­abil­ity, in par­tic­u­lar ru­ral women with dis­abil­ity, have been the most marginalised of all dis­abil­ity pop­u­la­tions when it comes to lead­er­ship and gov­er­nance,”Ms Er­ring­ton said.

She said the fo­rum would raise aware­ness about women with dis­abil­i­ties gain­ing lead­er­ship roles.

The fo­rum will in­clude talks from some of WA’s most suc­cess­ful women lead­ers in pol­icy, dis­abil­ity and arts.

Speak­ing from her own ex­pe­ri­ence, Ms Er­ring­ton said she had to over­come a lot of myths and neg­a­tive at­ti­tudes to dis­abil­ity be­fore she could at­tain a lead­er­ship role.

“There were ex­cep­tional peo­ple around but by and large the broader groups in the com­mu­nity with dis­abil­ity were marginalised,” she said. “Some of this has to do with ex­pec­ta­tions of the am­bi­tions for peo­ple with dis­abil­ity by so­ci­ety and peo­ple can be fear­ful of en­gag­ing with peo­ple with dis­abil­ity – WHAT: Women With Dis­abil­ity in Gov­er­nance fo­rum WHERE: Vis­Abil­ity, The Per­ron Cen­tre, 61 Kitch­ener Av­enue WHEN: 11am-4pm Thurs­day RSVP: Call Ricky on 9430 6616

Pic­ture: Martin Ken­nealey they don’t know what to say.

“I felt oth­ers were get­ting a bet­ter go than me be­cause of my dis­abil­ity, but I just needed a few re­sources to give me a leg up.

“I could think, write, speak and learn, I just needed a wheel­chair and a ramp.”

While Ms Er­ring­ton says the marginal­i­sa­tion was rarely in­ten­tional, pos­i­tive pro­mo­tion was needed to help peo­ple get over their “au­to­matic” views.

Www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d436063

Dis­abil­ity in the Arts, Dis­ad­van­tage in the Arts WA chair­woman and Carlisle res­i­dent He­len Er­ring­ton.

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