Sunday, 27 January 2008

What is involved in getting access? Part 2

image of someone speaking up

Being able to communicate (talking and being listened to)

  • Communication is central to access: it opens doors to having control. Not being able to speak doesn’t mean not having anything to say.

  • Access is supported when people listen.

  • Access can be denied when professionals ignore what people with learning disabilities think the important issues are.

  • If people are listened to then decisions can be made based on all the information.

Being ready and prepared for access

  • Access is helped when you teach people the skills to help themselves.

  • Access is hard when people are not properly prepared. For example, not being ready to start a job.

  • Access is helped when people with learning disabilities can show what they can do. For example, making CD-ROMS of people's skills so that people with learning disabilities can show people what they can do when go to job interviews.

  • Time is important We need time to learn, time to communicate and time to practice. We need to work to the time (pace) of people with learning disabilities.

  • Having the knowledge, the confidence to ask for things and good networks can help you gain access. It is what researchers call 'social capital'.

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