Video Shows a Day in the Life of a Person with Disability
7 January 2016 at 8:34 am
Former disability discrimination commissioner Graeme Innes has given an insight into the challenges people with disability face in their day-to-day life.
Innes, who is blind, is the star of a video intended to shine a light on how some members of the broader community can unwittingly make life for people with disability more difficult.
The video features a raft of issues that Innes deals with on a daily basis, from being bumped into by people who are distracted by their mobile phones, to people distracting his guide dog Arrow.
In one instance a man even uninvitedly pulls on his white cane in attempt to help him cross the road, before walking away seemingly confused when Innes declines his offer.
“Getting around, shopping, ordering food [is] bit trickier when you can’t see. I’ve done that all my life,” Innes said in the video.
“People ask me what it’s like. Some people try hard to help, others just don’t see me, and some people, well, they just don’t know what to do.”
With a video camera strapped to his chest, Innes chronicles some of the more frustrating elements of his day, while also employing his sense of humor to get the message across.
“Trolleys are a real challenge. They can break my cane easily. Broken cane means end of trip and a taxi home,” he said.
“People looking down at their phones, well you’re seeing about as much as me. That won’t end well.
“Grabbing my arm or cane, hey, I’m a person, not a piece of furniture to be pushed or pulled.”
The video was made by the people behind the Don’t DIS my ABILITY campaign, of which Innes is one of nine ambassadors. It has already been viewed over 63,000 times since it was uploaded late last year.
The campaign aims to celebrate the diversity and ability of people with disability while promoting positive perceptions and building an environment that encourages active inclusion at work, school, at home, in the community and in social activities.
Towards the end of the video, Innes calls on the broader community to be more considerate of people with disability.
“If you see someone with a white cane or a guide dog please watch where you’re going. Remember, we’re not watching,” he said.
“We’re stronger as one Australia. Inclusion is about you and I.”