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On 7 January 2016 the TUC launched its Manifesto for Disability Equality (pdf)

The TUC announced the launch in the press release TUC calls for practical action to implement disabiilty equality in new manifesto.

The Manifesto is about recognising Britain’s ten million disabled people as citizens with equal rights and supporting disabled people to play a full part in work and society. It sets out the policies needed to achieve this in employment, social care, transport, politics, arts and culture, and in social security. It is a tool to help trade unionists and others to resist government policies that hit disabled people badly.

The manifesto recognises that many people have accepted as true the lies that disabled people claiming benefits are scroungers or frauds and instead presents the true picture of the prejudice and poverty faced by too many disabled people.

The TUC campaign aims to win support for an alternative to government policies from politicians and leaders of society at all levels,  but also from work colleagues, neighbours and local communities.

The policies are those agreed by the TUC’s own disabled members and endorsed by the TUC’s governing body, the General Council. The TUC endorses the Social Model of disability as set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that was signed by the UK government.  The Manifesto calls for support for the social model as the foundation for the positive policies that are needed to challenge the prejudice and discrimination faced by many disabled people and the impoverishment of millions by government policies.

The manifesto has already been endorsed by friends of the TUC among disabled people’s organisations including DPAC (Disabled People against Cuts) and the Alliance for Inclusive Education (ALLFIE).

A Guide to Action

The Manifesto sets out, briefly, the key policy demands needed to achieve disability equality.

To help trade unionists and others to win the arguments and to gain supporters for the manifesto, the TUC has also published a guide for activists: Using the TUC Manifesto for Disability Equality: a guide for trade union activists (pdf)

The guide provides additional facts and figures to back up the manifesto. It encourages supporters to invite speakers or set up discussion around the issues raised by the manifesto, to approach politicians to support the demands, and to promote understanding through local action and social media. It encourages activists to set up alliances with organisations of disabled people and to support their campaigns and actions at local level.

Next steps

Reports on local activities should be sent to the TUC disability policy officer, Huma Munshi, These will be used to update this page.

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