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Natalie Clark
Hitting the re-set switch on disability

Media Release: Launch The Able Movement 
11 February 2015


A new social movement is being launched today to challenge old thinking  about disability.

Co-founder of the Able Movement Dr Mark Bagshaw says: “The recently released figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics confirm what most people in the disability space already know….that people living with disability are still far less likely to be participating in the labour force than other Australians. 

“But it’s not the disability that’s the problem here. It’s incredibly challenging for people living with disability to be dealing with a world that doesn’t expect very much from them.”

At the core of the new movement is the belief that the old hierarchical social welfare model, where a small group of people make all the decisions and people living with disability are at the bottom of the pyramid receiving support has to go if we are to turn around the statistics.

“When we work we can be financially independent and have some control over our lives…this should be so for every person in our community” Dr Bagshaw says. “The current culture of low expectations must be reversed.”

The Able Movement is a growing community of like- minded individuals or “Able Activists”, with and without disability, that activates, agitates and advocates to change attitudes about the capacity of people with a disability to participate in and contribute to our community, learning and economy.

Offering an on-line platform to support it’s on the ground activities, the Movement’s first key initiative is the “Tell your Story” project, which invites people to tell their stories about living with disability and getting on with productive lives.

“We believe that story telling is a very powerful way to break down people’s prejudices and to showcase the possibilities and we encourage everyone to get onto our website and get involve.”  

In the true spirit of a grass roots social movement, the Able Movement will be launched on February 11 at 6 pm by the people.  Those attending the launch, as well as those who aren’t able to attend will be asked to actively participate via social media.    

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