Our focus on people with a learning disability A learning disability is to do with the way someone's brain works. It makes it harder for someone to learn, understand or do things. has overshadowed the needs of other people who suffer from inequality and prejudice.
In particular, we have recognised that we are not doing enough to support the thousands of people with a learning disability from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities who experience ‘intersectional’ or double discrimination Discrimination is when someone is treated differently (usually in a bad way) because of things like their disability or their religion Religion is to do with the things you believe about the world. For example you may believe there is a god or something else. Examples of religions are Christianity, Hinduism, Islam and Judaism. . .
With the horrific killing of George Floyd in America, as well as the recent findings that in the UK people form BAME communities are two to three times more likely to die from COVID-19 than the population as a whole – it is essential that Mencap addresses some of these prevailing issues within our organisation An organisation are a group of people who work together. .
12% of our Mencap colleagues are from minority ethnic groups. We must get better at supporting them and our BAME volunteers, so we can really hear their voices. We recognise that we need to better account for the different lived experiences of people from marginalised communities, and prioritise coordinated action to centre them in our guidance Guidance means being given clear instructions to be able to do something well. and our risk and welfare assessments.
We would like to hear from people with a learning disability, and their families, from BAME communities. We would love to work with other charities and learn from them as we go forward.
I would be grateful for any thoughts or suggestions as we continue to cultivate inclusiveness, equality and diversity Diversity means people from all different cultures and backgrounds. within our organisation; to always do our best for the people we directly support and for the 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK.
Please send your thoughts and suggestions to email@example.com.
To start these conversations, Mencap has also produced a PDF easy read guide on racism and Black Lives Matter which can be found here.