The big question

    Can the law ever eradicate discrimination?

    Andy Doherty
    co-chair, National Forum of People with Learning Difficulties

    We need strong law. I don’t think the government is into it. They
    say they will stop discrimination going on but it’s still
    happening. We get discriminated against on a regular basis by
    agencies, taxis, care workers, service organisations. We get
    treated like children.

    Peggy Hatcher
    Bromley Advocacy Alliance

    One of the problems is that older people often don’t realise they
    are being discriminated against. Laws can’t get rid of all
    discrimination, but they do raise awareness. If age discrimination
    were against the law it might stop doctors making remarks like
    ‘what do you expect at your age?’

    Paul Grey
    Mental health service survivor

    Anti-racism laws have not helped to shape people’s attitudes for
    the better, because racism is internal. The law makers often do not
    know the black community, so laws do not reflect their reality.
    Black people have excelled because they have not relied on laws,
    but on their own creativity, innovation and perseverance.

    Shaun Webster
    CHANGE self-advocacy group

    The government needs to put its money where its mouth is and make
    it against the law to discriminate against us. The public do not
    try hard enough with people with disabilities. We are getting very
    frustrated and feel that no one listens. Just let us be equal –
    don’t patronise and demean us by giving us low paid or menial
    jobs.

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