Recent Articles

Who cares for the elder carers?

by Sarah Ismail     July 30, 2011 at 10:25 am

This week, I read the incredible story of Alf Winter, 90. He lives in Leicestershire, in sheltered housing, with his son, Keith, 55. Keith has Cerebral Palsy, and Alf is his full time carer.

At an age when most men would be expected to sit in a comfortable chair with the traditional pipe ‘n’ slippers, being cared for themselves, Alf Winter does all the household chores. He still drives, and cooks full meals every day. He says that he has to do it, as there’s no one else to do it!

He is one of around 77,000 carers aged over 65, just in the East Midlands.
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Minority Status Call For Sign Language

by Sarah Ismail     June 19, 2009 at 12:30 pm

I’ve just read on the BBC News website that, at the Voices of the West conference on Scotland’s “lesser used” languages, to be held in Inverness tomorrow (Saturday 20th June) Professor Graham Turner, of Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, plans to argue that Sign Language should be given the status of an indigenous and minority language.

I have no doubt that Deaf people are very happy about this idea. (the Deaf see themselves as able-bodied speakers of a language and members of a minority community, while the deaf see themselves as disabled.)

The thing is that I can hear, and I still think this is a great idea. I hope that all of you can also hear, so I wanted to know how you feel about it.

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UK Finally Ratifies CRPD

by Sarah Ismail     June 13, 2009 at 2:00 pm

I’ve been waiting for this moment since November 2008. On Monday, 8th June 2009, the UK government finally ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

The Convention is a landmark agreement that aims to give the world’s 650 million disabled people full equality, and ratification means that a country accepts its legal obligations under the treaty and ensures that any necessary laws are passed.

But what rights are guaranteed for disabled people by this Convention? Well, in summary, it’s about protecting our rights when it comes to making our own decisions; saying no to being placed in an institution; saying no to medical or psychological treatment; and living in the community. It also seeks to remove barriers to participation in daily life and enable equal opportunities for all.

This story has, unfortunately, been ignored by the mainstream media. So ignored that I’ve only just found out the news from the blog at the BBC disability website, Ouch. But, no matter what, this means real progress for the UK’s DisAbled population. As a DisAbled person, I am thrilled to hear it, and know that many of my friends are as well. To borrow the words of a very famous astronaut, this one small step for the mainstream is a giant leap for DisAbility.

Top Stories And Blog Review Friday 3rd April

by Sarah Ismail     April 3, 2009 at 10:00 am


and the dark side of it.

Goodwin considering voluntary pension cut.
Village blocks Google Streetview.
Wisden Cricketer of the year is a GIRL shock!
… and a British woman regains the freediving record.

Aid Agencies issue Afghan warning.
French Protests ahead of Nato summit.
Kenyan Lions poisoned by pesticide.
Pakistan region gripped by Taleban fear.

DAILY BLOG REVIEW / by Sarah Ismail

Welcome to our G20 Special Blog Review. There was loads of good stuff written about the G20, so if I’ve missed your contribution, I’m sorry. It wasn’t an easy job but I chose ten of the best.

BBC Blog Rory Cellan Jones on social networking at the march.

Blogotariat Words in pictures.

Coffee House Brown’s G20 Sermon.

Council of Foreign Relations This G20 March was not the first of its kind.

FIT Watch Wishes all protests were policed with as much respect as the march. The economic crisis is not to blame for the riots at the march.

Oxfam News Blog Bloggers made history by reporting live from the summit.

Sky News Blogs Video: Asking what the G20 will achieve. Liveblogging the summit.

And finally, Brett’s Gourmet Food Blog reports that Jamie Oliver cooked for the G20 Summit….or you can browse through previous Netcasts

Top Stories And Blog Review- 31st March

by Sarah Ismail     March 31, 2009 at 11:40 am


Brown: stop cash for MPs’ second homes
UK troops begin Iraqi withdrawal
Poll: Brown should focus on domestic problems
iPhone brings Skype to UK’s mobile masses

Why the Democrats Can’t Govern
Afghan women’s rights hit by new law
Sarkozy and Merkel shape European unity
Rampage in Pakistan shows reach of militants

DAILY BLOG REVIEW / by Sarah Ismail

Andy Worthington Publishes Moazzam Begg’s recent interview with Binyam Mohammed.

Bartholomew’s Notes Obama Seeks Muslims For White House Posts.

Bleeding Heart Show On Prison Reform

Chicken Yoghurt Thinks Iain Dale’s taken over the media!

Gary Younge/CIF The Mythical Muslim.

Indigo Jo Car crime is a priority over rape. What are the police thinking?

Natalie Bennett A book that explains an important part of Herstory.

And finally…Victoria Brignell on her penfriend… the only person she knows who doesn’t know she’s DisAbled. Or you can flick through previous Netcasts

Don’t blame the children!

by Sarah Ismail     February 24, 2009 at 8:45 am

CerrieI’m deeply shocked by news reports that DisAbled CBeebies presenter about Cerrie Burnell. Despite already having had small roles in Eastenders, The Bill and Grange Hill, the BBC has received an unbelievable nine formal complaints about Miss Burnell recently.

Why? Simply because Miss Burnell was born with one arm! What difference does that make? Any sensible person living in 21st century England would instantly ask.
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The authorities are always wrong

by Sarah Ismail     November 16, 2008 at 5:18 am

Anyone with any interest in Disability Rights should know by now that the UK government is currently refusing to ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). This is the first  international, legally binding human rights instrument to protect the rights of people with disabilities.

According to BBC News, the government hopes to ratify the Convention by December 2008, but plans to modify its obligations in some areas, particularly the right of people with disabilities to access a mainstream education. With developing countries such as India, Bangladesh and South Africa on the growing list that have already ratified the CRPD, with no modifications, this is not good enough for Disability Rights campaigners in the UK- a country which claims to be developed.
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Top Stories and Blog Review – 14th Nov

by Sarah Ismail     November 14, 2008 at 10:25 am

BT cuts 10,000 jobs

‘Extra UK troops’ for Afghanistan
Facing a sperm donor shortage
Pound sinks to record low against the euro
Nintendo Wii Fit selling out

Increase in forced labour, rape in Congo
Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae need more money
Rove: History favors Republicans in 2010
China startled by force of crisis
North Korea to cut S Korea links

DAILY BLOG REVIEW / by Sarah Ismail

Ala Abbas – Doesn’t like the name Bitch magazine. Neither do I, Ala.

Angela Saini – Another post on the rise of the Internet.

Bartholomew’s Notes – Reviews Tuesday night’s Dispatches programme on Africa’s ‘Witch Children.’

Bleeding Heart Show – Reports on Parliament’s idea of increasing diversity among its members. DisAbility has made the list, for a change!

Clive Davis – Seven minutes of satire at its sharpest. Friday Fun.

Derek Wall – The rise (and rise) of the Greens.

EUTopia – Rules on straight bananas are being scrapped.

Harry’s Place – On a racist who claims he made a mistake…

TODAY’S TOP STORIES / 7th November

by Sarah Ismail     November 7, 2008 at 9:20 am

Georgian Claims over War Called Into Question

Shock victory puts the bounce back into Brown
Britain labelled ‘cocaine capital of Europe’
Obama prepares to spike euphoria with reality
DR Congo accuses UN over killings

DAILY BLOG REVIEW / by Sarah Ismail

Ala Abbas – They said this day would never come…. then it did.

Bartholomew’s Notes – There’s trouble at New Statesman…

Clive Davis – America’s First Couple go global… already! Friday Fun.

Derek Wall – Tells us why a concert was cancelled in Switzerland.

Dr Strangelove – The World Is Changed.

Feministing – Why we should hang on to the word Feminism.

Liberal England – Jonathan is a tad irritated.

New Humanist – It’s time for the historic poll we’ve all been waiting for…

TODAY’S TOP STORIES / 31st October

by Sarah Ismail     October 31, 2008 at 10:55 am

‘Human catastrophe’ grips Congo

And more…
Somalia’s Pirates Flourish in a Lawless Nation
Rocked again: BBC all at sea in another storm
Bush’s Last Push To Deregulate
Barclays gets Middle Eastern money

DAILY BLOG REVIEW / by Sarah Ismail

In this week of religious festivals, today’s roundup has a slightly religious theme. I’ve never liked tricks much, so I hope you will consider it a treat. Happy Halloween! And, of course, belated Divali wishes to anyone who celebrated!

1820 – A two minute video clip for one of this week’s Friday Fun links.

Chicken Yoghurt – The public resigns over Brandgate. I couldn’t choose between them, so this week you get two Friday Fun links.

Harry’s Place – David T doesn’t trust the government on Islamism.

Indigo Jo – The Message, a film about the arrival of Islam, is being remade.

Manjula Sood/New Statesman – On the meanings of Divali.

Rahila Gupta/CiF – Wonders whether a film can lead to positive changes in India’s religious divides.

The Langar Hall – A voting guide for Sikh Americans.

Tory Troll – Adam has a question for our old friend Andrew Gilligan: are you being a very naughty sockpuppet?

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