I was shocked and appalled to hear about the comment Phillip Davies MP made during a Parliamentary debate earlier this year. The following is from the recent newsletter of the Equality and Human Rights Commission:
Mr Davies had argued that disabled people 'could' be paid less than the minimum wage.
In the debate, Mr Davies contended that that employers often chose non-disabled people over disabled people when recruiting, since they were forced to pay the minimum wage to all potential employees and therefore would not take on a disabled candidate who 'cannot, by definition be as productive in their work' as a non-disabled candidate who would be 'more productive and less of a risk'.
He went on to argue that disabled people should therefore be able to offer to work for less than the minimum wage if it would help them get a job.
Read more at: http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/
What do you think?
BBC Radio Shropshire
Yesterday, BBC Radio Shropshire (Jim Hawkins' Programme) gave air time to an individual who held extremely prejudiced and discriminatory views towards disabled people. Of course, freedom of expression is crucial to a democratic society, but some forms of extreme expression, particularly that which incites intolerance between groups should, I think, be curtailed.
It saddens me that a reputable station could encourage this type of (what I consider to be totally unacceptable) participation,especially given the recent case of the horrific torture and murder of Gemma Hayter. Disabled people can be vulnerable and it is important that they have advocates who can fight for their rights to be protected. It did not seem to be appreciated yesterday that disability includes not only physically disabled but also anyone with, sensory impairment, learning disability or mental health problems, and thus the airing of such prejudice could cause great harm. What is more, the target audience of Radio Shropshire is specifically 50 years and older; a cohort which includes many vulnerable and disabled people.