Anti discrimination and anti bullying of people with disabilities

“We tend to hear a lot about racism, sexism, and bullying on the news or in school. These are all things we should fight as they are horrible. But so is bullying and discrimination against people with disabilities yet this seems to get much less focus.

As someone with Autism, I have overheard or been told about plenty of comments made about me which are not very pleasant. I have also experienced people making jokes in front of me based on my condition. I know I am not unique in this and yet it often feels as if it is not treated with the same horror as if it was a racist or sexist joke or comment. For example, there are times where you might hear a person say to their friend that they are autistic or special because that person is being stupid. They should know that there might be a person who is autistic or has special needs close to them, which can make that person feel very uncomfortable. I don’t understand if their friend is being stupid why they can’t just say ‘you are being stupid’ rather than imply everyone with Autism or special needs is stupid, which we are not.

Discrimination or bullying against people with disabilities no matter what type, can happen in many ways so as an Ambassador of Active Essex I wanted to make this point for people like me who have and will continue to be judged just on their disability, so the world is reminded that it is no more pleasant for us to hear degrading inferences about us than for someone of a different sex or race. Please share this, as many people seem unaware that calling someone autistic or special in a jokey way is offensive to us and it hurts whether you meant it towards us or not. Maybe our news channels and schools will start highlighting how degrading and discriminatory language in any sense including thoughtless comments about disability, is stupid!”