ILMI January 2021 Bulletin

Making Inclusion A Reality

Invitation to an Online Forum: Independent Living Movement Ireland (ILMI) is working with South Dublin County Council to support the inclusion of disabled people in developing and implementing housing policy and provision in the South Dublin County area. ILMI would like to support the establishment and capacity building of a network of disabled people, from the South Dublin area, as a central part of this initiative. Through funding from the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC), Values Lab will be supporting us with this work.

We are inviting you to participate in an introductory online forum for this project. The online forum will provide information on the project and open up a discussion on how best to progress participation by disabled people in the South Dublin County area.

The forum details:
Date: Thursday. 21 January 2021
Time: 11am to 1pm
To register: Please email  We will then send you the link to the event.
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has opened up new possibilities for disabled people, including:
the equal right of all persons with disabilities to live in the community, with choices equal to others.

Accessible and adequate housing is key to realising this right. Disabled people need to have a say, at a local authority level, to ensure there is:
§            real choice available for disabled people in relation to their housing needs; and
§            adequate and appropriate social housing provision and housing supports provided for disabled people.

Local authorities are required to:
§            prepare a strategy to meet the housing needs of disabled people in their area; and
§            establish a Housing Disability Steering Group.

These strategies need to be informed and shaped by disabled people, otherwise our diverse needs will not be met. Disabled people should be active participants on the Housing Disability Steering Groups. This is what the Making Inclusion A Reality project hopes to support and achieve. We would like this to be a model for other local authorities all across Ireland.

11.00    Welcome and Introduction
Damien Walshe, ILMI
11.10    Why is housing an equality and human rights issue for disabled people?
Peter Kearns, ONSIDE Coordinator, ILMI
11.20    Housing policy: local authorities responding to the needs of disabled people
James Cawley, Policy Officer ILMI
11.30    Questions and Comments
11.45    Introducing the project: Making Inclusion a Reality
Rachel Mullen, Values Lab
11.55    Group discussions
How could disabled people network together to inform housing policy and provision in the South Dublin County area?
How can disabled people be enabled to have a real say in the South Dublin County Council steering group?
12.25    Feedback from the groups
12.45    Next Steps
13.00    Close

(Image shows IHREC logo and text “This project is supported under the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Grant Scheme”).

Learn about the UN Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)

(Image shows DPO Coalition in big letters, green background)

What does it mean for Disabled People in Ireland? An information webinar presented by the Disabled Persons Coalition (DPO Coalition).
This information webinar will take place on Wednesday 27th January, 7pm – 9pm.
You will get information about:
•            The Convention and what it means
•            How you can engage in the Government’s consultation on Ireland’s Draft State Report
•            The DPO Coalition’s planned Shadow Report
Ireland’s Draft Initial State Report under the UN CRPD was published in December 2020 and is open for consultation until March 3rd 2021. The DPO Coalition is one of four funded Disability Participation and Consultation Network members who will be making a submission on the State’s Draft Report.

The DPO Coalition is also developing an independent report that ‘shadows’ the State’s report and presents an alternative view of how the State has met its obligations under the Convention.

At the webinar we will inform you about further webinars, community consultations and focus group discussions.

What is the DPO Coalition?
The DPO Coalition is an alliance of disabled people and disabled peoples organisations (DPOs) which was established in 2020 to develop and submit a report to the United Nations (UN) on Ireland’s implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

Who should attend?
•            Disabled people
•            Anyone interested in the UN CRPD and its process
•            Anyone planning to contribute to the Irish Draft Initial State Party Report

How to Register
If you would like to register contact Independent Living Movement of Ireland (ILMI) at

Members of the DPO Coalition are:
As I Am – Ireland’s National Autism Advocacy Organisation
Disabled Women of Ireland (DWI)
Independent Living Movement Ireland (ILMI)
Irish Deaf Society (IDS)
National Platform of Self Advocates – Ireland’s only DPO run by people with learning
Voice of Vision Impairment (VVI)

Strategies for Change

(Image shows a wordle of Enjoyment  Surprising language history-of-disability Foundation Choice  Interesting Transformative Paradigm-Shift Progression Empowerment   Equality Insightful  Confidence  Paradigm-Shift)

ILMI are delighted to say that the first session of the Strategies for Change Online Course kicked off last Tuesday night with 20 + budding activists. During our 2 hour session people were invited to introduce themselves and listen to why everyone was investing their time and energy into doing such a course. Fiona (Project Worker) then gave a presentation about the History of Disability in Ireland and participants were then invited to think about their own past, their present, and what their future could look like in relation to the topic.

There was a great sense of “the collective” all wanting to effect change, and all wanting to learn the “how to do it”. In the next 2 sessions Peter Kearns  will be exploring disability equality and its importance. We will keep you posted on further developments”.

Contact for further information

The Oireachtas Disability Group (ODG)

The Oireachtas Disability Group (ODG) held its first meeting of 2021 on Tuesday 12th January. The ODG is a cross-party group of TDs, Senators and key disability organisations working together which was set up in 2017 to realise the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Independent Living Movement Ireland sits on the ODG along with the Disability Federation of Ireland, Inclusion Ireland, National Federation of Voluntary Service Providers and National Disability Services Association. Over 30 Oireachtas members attended the online event and collectively the organisations highlighted priority asks which included:
•            Reinstatement of NPHET Vulnerable People sub-group and a mechanism for ‘disability’ to engage with the High Risk Subgroup.
•            Better data on disability, especially on people living in their own homes.
•            Prioritisation of the vaccine for disabled people at high risk should they contract COVID-19, staff in all disability services including Personal Assistants and family carers.
•            Expedited testing for disability service staff who are close contacts, as people delivering essential services.
•            Paying attention to priority issues like digital divide, school closures, staff shortages etc.
Find attached a copy of the Powerpoint presentation from the meeting.

The ODG made important progress during the last administration, with the active support of Oireachtas members. The ODG hopes to continue to engage with them especially with Ireland reporting on the UNCRPD this year and some important developments such as the establishment of the Oireachtas Disability Matters Committee to aid our joint work in the future.

If you feel there is any priority asks that ILMI can bring to the ODG contact our policy officer on

ILMI Social Night Thursday 28th of January 2021 at 7pm ADAM PEARSON

Image shows Adam Pearson

Famous for his quick wit and genuine warmth Adam Pearson has carved a career that spans the disciplines of presenting, acting and producing.

Pearson graduated from the University of Brighton with a degree in business management. He worked various jobs in television production for the BBC and Channel 4.

In 2013, he was cast alongside Scarlett Johansson in Jonathan Glazer’s film Under the Skin. He said that he hoped the role would challenge disfigurement stigma. He honed his skills working as a researcher for the BBC and Channel 4 before becoming a strand presenter on the first series of Beauty and the Beast: the Ugly Face of Prejudice on Channel 4.

Pearson has worked on all five series of The Undateables for Channel 4 as the casting researcher. He has presented the BBC Three documentaries, Adam Pearson: Freak Show and The Ugly Face of Disability Hate Crime, and appeared as a reporter in the Channel 4 series, Tricks of the Restaurant Trade.

To register email

Recruitment of People with Lived Experience to the Digital and Assistive Technology Task Group of the National Clinical Programme for People with Disability. Click here for details.

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