Scope celebrates anniversary with new history

This week Scope, the charity for people with cerebral palsy,
launched a new book to mark its 50th anniversary charting the
history of the organisation and the changing image of

Scope started as the National Spastics Society, set up by three
parents and a social worker with just five pounds. Today it has a
£70 million turnover and employs more than 3,500 staff.

But its book is not a conventional corporate history, and
instead offers users the chance to express their views, and while
there is praise for the organisation’s achievements, there is
criticism too.

Author Chris Davies, who has had a lifelong relationship with
Scope, says: “Not even its severest critics would claim that Scope
has done more harm than good. But it must be said that it has done
some harmful things, even though the harm is only clear in
retrospect. Scope valued segregation for too long. Countless people
have been isolated through education, accommodation and

Criticism from users includes claims that in the past the
charity has encouraged negative attitudes towards disabled people
and that it is dominated by the parents of disabled people rather
than those with disabilities themselves.

Davies concludes: “If disabled people are increasingly
considered equal in our society then part of that equality must
include recognition of our capability to control our own

‘Changing Society: a personal history of Scope’, more detail






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