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Scope marks 20 years since the Disability Discrimination Act

12th Nov 2015

From climate change to conflict, Oxfam campaigns to change the things that keep people locked in poverty. We believe it works. Tireless campaigning from us and our supporters have led to some great achievements too. In 2013, an historic Arms Trade Treaty was signed to control the sale of illegal weapons worldwide. And last year in March to mark three years of the conflict in Syria, thousands of people in over 40 countries around the world joined together in solidarity vigils all over the world. This month, Scope are celebrating 20 years since The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) law was passed. This happened because of activists with strong beliefs about injustice.

Twenty years ago this November, parliament passed a law to ban discrimination against disabled people. The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) was the first such law for disabled people in Britain.

However, the DDA fell far short of the civil rights bill that many disabled campaigners handcuffed themselves to buses and threw themselves from wheelchairs to achieve.

In the 20th anniversary year of the DDA, disability charity Scope is marking the civil rights campaign that brought about legislative change by sharing activists' campaigning stories, via film and blog.

You can watch Scope's first film here, a study of the civil rights campaign and the DDA that resulted from this empowering activism, as told by leading campaigners of the time. 

Every day for the next two weeks, Scope will chart the journey of disability rights campaigners, from the birth of a strong, united campaigning movement to the passing of the DDA.

Other civil rights struggles are better known. We believe that it's time more people know about the fight for disability equality. We hope that raising awareness of this campaign will change attitudes.

Many of the campaigners who would tell their story have passed away. We want to preserve a past that is fading. That's also why Scope is partnering the national museum of democracy and equality, the People's History Museum, to encourage campaigners to donate physical materials of the fight.

We want to show a new generation of activists the positive proof that campaigning does still matter, activism must still go on, and raising your voice can make change happen. In the final days of Scope's project, young disabled voices reflect on the civil rights campaign and look to the future for equality.

Please help us to celebrate the forgotten campaigners who made change happen and can inspire the next generation to campaign for more change.

Scope will be sharing the stories on their #DDA20 website, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube channels using the #DDA20 hashtag. We, and our campaigners, would appreciate your support in sharing them with your networks.

Header image: a demonstration in 1994 by 3000 disabled people for civil rights legislation.