ILMI eBulletin February 4th 2022

As always if you want to know more about any of these articles or ILMI’s work in general then do get in touch. You can reach us at

Media and Me

IMAGE: montage of screenshots of speakers from the event

A big thank you to all our amazing contributors listed in order of appearance: ILMI’s MC for the evening was Dr James Casey, opening address by ILMI’s Chairperson Des Kenny, Claire Kenny ILMI Assistant Policy Intern and SFC Graduate.  Panel Discussion with James LeBrecht (Oscar nominated film maker, director of Crip Camp and disabled activist), Selina Bonnie (ILMI Vice Chair), and Mik Scarlet (UK broadcaster and disabled activist). Páraic Kerrigan (Assistant Professor in the School of Information and Communication Studies at University College Dublin). Paula Soraghan ILMI VOICE Project worker and SFC Graduate. Stephanie Comey BAI, Damien Walshe ILMI CEO and Musician, activist and artist John Kelly.

A huge thanks to everyone who took the time to join us on Wednesday evening for our #MediaAndMe event. Our position paper ‘Our Lives, Our Voices: Reclaiming the Narrative’ is also available to view here  and for anyone couldn’t make the webinar here is the LINK of the recording from our YouTube channel.

Calling all Personal Assistants (PAs)!

IMAGE: Call out poster

Calling all Personal Assistants (PAs)! Are you currently employed as a PA? Have you an interest in sharing your experience of working with disabled people to live independent lives? Perhaps you previously worked in the role and would like to share your knowledge and expertise on your experiences? If so, we want to hear from you!

ILMI are currently developing a new project around the work of PAs and how we can further promote it as a career option. If you are interested in taking part or need more information, then please contact our Policy Officer James at

Call for focus group on personal grooming services.

The Irish Centre for Diversity is working in partnership with Image Skillnet to co-create training for the Personal Grooming Industry in Ireland. The aim is to create a programme that will address current and future Diversity and Inclusion skills needs within the Personal Grooming Industry.

The Irish Centre for Diversity want to consult disabled people to offer valuable views and insights which will help them address Diversity and Inclusion skills within the Personal Grooming Industry i.e. going to the hairdressers/barbers and other personal grooming services. This is to ensure that disabled people and clients feel respected, welcome, and treated with dignity.

The consultation will be 30-minutes online via Zoom on Tuesday 1st March at 11am.

If you are interested in taking part in this project or want more information contact our policy officer on:

Save The Date!


ILMI invite you to #BreakTheBias

We are calling disabled women to join us for our International Women’s Day Celebration on Tuesday, 8th March 2022  at 7PM on Zoom  Registration and programme details will be released soon.

ILMI New Staff, please welcome Nem and Niall!

Nem Kearns Full Spectrum Community Development Worker

IMAGE: photo of Nem Kearns

With a background in reproductive rights, LGBTQIA+ and disability justice, Nem is excited to take up the role of Full Spectrum Community Development Worker. Full Spectrum Ireland (FSI) is an all-island peer-led organisation for disabled LGBTQIA+ people, focused on peer support and advocacy. Over the course of this project role, Nem looks forward to collaborating with their colleague Niall, the FSI membership, ILMI staff and the wider LGBTQIA+ community to grow this space.

Nem currently serves on the Boards of Disabled Women Ireland, ARC and TENI and is a co-founding member of Neuro Pride Ireland. They hope to bring this cross-community collaborative perspective to their work with Full Spectrum and ILMI. Nem also works as a disability policy advisor to elected officials and civil society organisers and firmly believes that intersectionality is fundamental to achieving meaningful equality, seeking to apply the maxim Nothing About Us, Without Us in all their work.

Niall Jordan Full Spectrum Community Development Worker

IMAGE: Photo of Niall Jordan

Niall Jordan first developed as a community advocate and activist when he founded 8 Rays Leitrim – Leitrim’s first LGBTI+ community and social group in 2011. 8 Rays Leitrim provided Niall with experience facilitating social groups and organising events. He went on to work as co-lead of YES Equality Leitrim during the 2015 Marriage Equality Referendum. Niall has worked with various LGBTI+ Pride Festivals and community groups across the North-West between 2008 and 2021. Niall currently serves on the committee of Leitrim Pride.

Niall is trained as a sexual health promoter with the ‘Foundational Programme in Sexual Health Promotion (FPSHP)’ and HIV Ireland’s ‘Let’s Talk About… Safer Sex!” training for trainer’s programme. Placing sexual health and wellness at the heart of disabled LGBTI+ lives is one of the key focus points for Niall to develop within Full Spectrum Ireland (FSI), while empowering members to advocate for themselves as individuals and as a collective.

Draft report to GREVIO for Ireland’s evaluation under the Istanbul Convention

IMAGE: screenshot of Fiona Weldon in attendance

On Tuesday morning last, I joined in a conversation about the issues that disabled woman encounter in relation to violence and abuse. Maëlle Noir, an Irish Research Council PhD Scholar is conducting research for the Observatory’s draft report to GREVIO for Ireland’s evaluation under the Istanbul Convention and both the National Women’s Council and Maëlle were particularly keen to include our views as disabled women in their final report with reference to research, undertaken by the National Women’s Council in partnership with Community Work Ireland – Improving the Health Outcomes and Experiences of the Healthcare System for Marginalised women.

Amongst our discussions included the reality that:

•            We live in an non-disabled male dominated world
•            Disabled women ARE MORE VULNERABLE because of our perceived “helplessness” which is not ok
•            Women’s health services are not physically accessible e.g. examination rooms/tables
•            Women’s aids services are not physically accessible
•            Disability equality training is essential – this needs to be offered out to all medical clinicians and delivered by disabled women
•            Disabled women are sometimes afraid of reporting abuse, also some may be reliant on families/carer’s/PA’s, this group can also be abusers
•            There is a real need to build solidarity amongst all women – respecting and embracing and celebrating difference – disabled women are women and can be from a different country, have a different skin colour, are from different backgrounds, they can be heterosexual, gay, lesbian, are carers, wives, lovers, friends, homemakers, mothers, sisters, employers/employee’s – intersectionality

Written by SFC Project worker

Dublin City Council

As Dublin City Council begin to develop plans to invest in this urban environment we are looking for your input as we reimagine this area and strive to make this vision a reality.
More information and the survey link here
The next steps are:
Three week non statutory public consultation from 31st January to 20th of February 2022
Further consultation with local businesses and stakeholders
Submission of a Part 8 planning application

Irishrail Passenger Assistance Prototype App

Irishrail are developing and testing a Passenger Assistance App prototype that will allow individuals to pre-book assistance and manage their journeys. They are exploring whether an app such as this has the potential to make a significant improvement to the way individuals with mobility and vision impairments access Irishrail’s services. As this is a prototype, they are currently only testing it on the DART line but would ultimately like to extend it to their full service if successful.

They are currently looking for mobility and vision impaired regular DART users to become part of a research panel which will include live testing of a prototype app. More info here 

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