I’m proud that 18 months ago, you chose me to be the first ever disabled members’ representative on the NEC. I’ve been at every NEC and subcommittee meeting to represent disabled members, ensuring our priorities are heard.
I’ve kept focus on the policies disabled people need, telling shadow ministers and the NPF that we need implement a social security system that truly works for us, a National Independent Living Service and a better-resourced Access to Work scheme.
I worked to get the social model of disability into the Party’s rule book, recognising that it is society not our impairments that disable us; and to get autonomous Disabled Members Structures passed overwhelmingly at Conference. These structures will be crucial in giving us a greater voice in the Party.
But the work isn’t done. We need a Labour government that will implement the changes disabled people need and that won’t happen without an NEC rep willing to hold our leadership’s feet to the fire. I want to see the continuation of the hybrid meetings pilot I’ve helped introduce, and to see the social model put into action, with the cultural and procedural changes necessary to make Labour truly inclusive and accessible.