20th century rights movements

From the 1890s, disabled people have struggled for their rights, for human dignity and just to be included. In the 1920s and 1930s, there were hundreds of thousands of First World War veterans with no rights at all in the UK, campaigning for the ‘Right to Work’ through the National League for the Blind and Disabled. They formed the first disability movement in this country, through which disabled people organised collectively against discrimination.

In the 1920s, unions of disabled war veterans were formed all over the UK. They held sit-ins in order to get legislation enacted to ensure their right to employment. As a result, the government brought in a 3% quota system which forced employers to take on registered-disabled employees. This was replaced by the Disability Discrimination Act in 1996.

In the 1990s, disabled activists in the USA campaigned against euthanasia and assisted suicide under the slogan ‘T4 Never Again’

The last 30 years have seen the growth of the Disability Movement, arguing for an end to segregation, and many parents campaigning for human rights for their disabled children. Generally, these movements for social change for disabled people’s rights have not been shown in mainstream films and are hidden from the public gaze.

Published in: on February 3, 2007 at 2:50 am  Comments Off on 20th century rights movements  
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