As a visually impaired white cane user, there is nothing worse than walking straight into an unexpected hazard. Unfortunately in London there are now thousands of them. Dockless bike schemes exploded all over the capital, and the UK generally, in the last couple of years. These app based initiatives allow anyone to log in, pick… Continue reading Dockless Bikes – a navigational nightmare!
As a visually impaired woman using a white cane I experience unwanted touching in public every single day. I have been dragged across roads, pulled out of train carriages and pushed around shops, without being asked if I wanted assistance first. These experiences can be distressing and disorientating, occasionally they cause me physical harm. Whenever… Continue reading Private Places, Public Spaces
I live in a suburban family neighbourhood so I regularly encounter small children on my walk to work. My white cane totally fascinates them and I almost every day I over hear a loud “WHAT’S THAT MUMMY?” Parents seem to have two responses to this question, they either answer it or they shush the child,… Continue reading Don’t kids say the darndest things?
For nearly 27 years I used to say that I wasn’t “defined by my disability”. The reality was that I had internalised pervasive, toxic and negative representations of disability. By refusing to be defined by my disability, I denied myself an identity, a community and the support I needed. My disability used to be something… Continue reading How does disability define me?
The place I get stared at the most when I’m using my white cane is the cinema. A few months ago I was queuing up with Other Half to buy some popcorn and an older lady did a dramatic double take. According to OH, she then proceeded to turn around and repeatedly look me up… Continue reading Painting a Picture with Words
I don’t really consider myself very fashionable. I’ve never had a massive interest in clothes. I wear makeup somewhat begrudgingly and constantly feel like I’m probably getting it wrong. My wardrobe contains more PJs than nice dresses. A recent transition to a new job has meant I’ve had to dress a bit more professionally in… Continue reading Bold, Blind & Beautiful?
With the rise in hate crime so evident, street harassment is on the minds of many of us. However, for disabled people, street harassment is a matter of every-day living. It is a very rare day that I am able to leave the house with my wheelchair and not be subjected to some form of… Continue reading “Just Ask, Don’t Grab”: the role of Active Bystander Intervention