Workfare Event Accessibility Information

ACCESSIBILITY STATEMENT

Boycott Workfare Birmingham recognizes that this world is designed to accommodate some people’s needs while putting up barriers in the face of others.
But we know ,when it comes to the fight against workfare and, in fact, all struggle for a more just world, we are all in it together and, moreover, any fight against exploitation and domination must resist reproducing the very structure we are fighting against, and must strive to ensure accessibility for all. To that end, we are committed to making our events, be they protests or meetings, as broadly accessible as possible, given the financial and resource-constraints we have.

In particular we will make accessibility information as available as possible, and do our best to accommodate any needs that arise. These include needs around mobility and communication as well as striving to maintain anti-racist, queer and trans positive, anti-ablist, anti-sexist space. As we are, indeed, all in this together, any skills, ideas, or resources that you can offer to help make our work more accessible is really appreciated.

City Centre Workfare Walk of Shame, Monday 9th April

Route is to be decided but will be step free. The walk will take around 1 3/4 hours with regular stop offs along the way. This event will be outdoors. The total route length is 1.4 miles.
A route will be finalised on Monday and a map published early next week, which will give an estimation of the total length of the route, detail locations of accessible toilets and baby changing facilities, and stopping points.

The meeting point is Chamberlain Square, outside Birmingham Central Library. This is approx. 1/3rd Mile from Snow Hill (step free), and approx. 1/2 mile from New Street and Moor Street train stations. Step Free route from New Street station goes through the Bullring.

Acocks Green Walk of Shame, Saturday 28th April

This event will take place outdoors and will last around 1hr – 1 1/2hrs. The walk route will be step free but is to be decided.
More information will be available soon.

General Accessibility Information

We don’t currently have any funding, but if you can’t afford to come to a meeting or demo due to transport costs, please get in touch and we will try to arrange something.

Accompaniment/buddies

If you need someone to meet you at a train or bus stop, and head over with you to protest and/or a buddy during the event (to navigate spaces, to help push your chair, or for any other reasons) please be in touch with as much notice as possible, and we will make arrangements that suit your needs. Where needed, we’ll try to arrange one-to-one buddies, but we may need to team up.

Interpretation/translation
We do not currently have any interpreters or translators set up. If you need BSL interpretation or lip-reading support (i.e. someone to repeat what is spoken in order for you to lipread) please be in touch as soon as possible and we will do our best to set something up.

If you or someone you know needs translation to or from languages other than English, please be in touch and we will do our best to find someone.

Children
We welcome children and families at our demonstrations. Though the protests are low-risk and meant to be child-friendly, there is always some risk when attending a protest, however it should be easy enough to leave with children as needed.
The meetings are all open to children. Please be in touch if you would like some help with on-site child care and we can ask for volunteers to play with kids during the meeting, to give you an extra set of eyes and allow you to focus more on the meeting or action, if you’d like.

Other needs

If you have needs, such as other communication support, allergies or anything else please let us know and we will work with you to accommodate those needs as possible. Out of respect for people who might have allergies or environmental sensitivities, please consider refraining from using heavily scented soaps or perfumes when coming to the meetings.

King’s Heath Meetings

The All Saints Centre is wheelchair accessible and has accessible, single person toilets and baby changing facilities.

Transportation
King’s Heath Community Centre is on the 50 & 35 bus routes and 11a/c routes, and stops are within 300 metres of the community centre, on the corner of Vicarage Road and Alcester Road (Kings Heath high street).

We don’t currently have any funding, but if you can’t afford to come to a meeting or demo due to transport costs, please get in touch and we will try to arrange something.

Accompaniment/buddies

If you need someone to meet you at the bus stop or somewhere else, and accompany you to the meeting and/or a buddy during the event (to navigate spaces or for any other reasons) please be in touch with as much notice as possible, and we will make arrangements that suit your needs. Where needed, we’ll try to arrange one-to-one buddies, but we may need to team up.

Interpretation/translation

Though we recognize the importance of BSL interpretation for any event, due to limited resources and availability, we may not be able to ensure that every action or meeting is BSL interpreted but will make efforts to offer this as much as we can. If you need BSL interpretation or lip-reading support (i.e. someone to repeat what is spoken in order for you to lipread) please be in touch so we can priortize this.

If you need translation to or from languages other than English, please be in touch and we will do our best to find someone.

Children’s needs

The meetings are all open to children. Please be in touch if you would like some help with on-site child care and we can ask for volunteers to play with kids during the meeting, to give you an extra set of eyes and allow you to focus more on the meeting or action, if you’d like.

There is a small selection of children’s toys in the usual meeting room, and a second table which they can play on.

Other needs

If you have needs, such as other communication support, allergies or anything else please let us know and we will work with you to accommodate those needs as possible. Out of respect for people who might have allergies or environmental sensitivities, please consider refraining from using heavily scented soaps or perfumes when coming to the meetings.

Call-Out For Accessibility Volunteers

Unlike the government, we are not forcing people to volunteer in order to live. However, we are really hoping that people with skills, time and energy, could share some of that to help other folks be involved. In most cases, what we are asking of you can happen as you participate in the action or meeting, though in some cases, such as interpretation or child care, volunteering might limit your ability to participate directly, though of course it would allow someone else to participate more fully

People needed:

Buddies
– people might be needed to meet someone at a bus stop or train station, and head with them over to the site. Please let us know if you would be able to walk longer distances (+/- half-mile) and able to help push a wheelchair if needed.

BSL interpreters or speakers – Given our lack of money, anyone who can help with this would be appreciated. Where possible we would like to have trained interpreters, but if you are not, yet can communicate with BSL, please be in touch and perhaps you can offer a level of access otherwise not available.


Child care
– Though most actions and meetings are open to children, it can still be nice for parents to know there are one or two people dedicated to keeping their eyes on the children, and perhaps running some activities or games to keep the children engaged. If you would be willing to offer this, please get in touch.

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6 responses to “Workfare Event Accessibility Information

  1. Pingback: Workfare Campaign Activities in Feb and March | Birmingham Against The Cuts

  2. Thank you, thank you, thank you! there aren’t enough thank yous in the world to describe how this makes me feel! I don’t think I will be able to attend – so far, you’re the nearest event to me that I know of, but I’d be coming from Manchester and I don’t know if I’ll be up to the journey. However your positive inclusion statement makes me feel very, very welcome – I have ME and can’t walk very far, I don’t need support, just lots of time to get somewhere. If I’m well enough on the day, I’ll be coming.

    • Hi Shirley,

      Firstly thank you, I’m typing this with a smile on my face knowing that doing this has had the result that we wanted.
      You should also give credit to Amanda from the local Boycott Workfare group who wrote this, to DPAC who helped us and UK Uncut who made me personally aware of the need to do this when they joined with DPAC for the welfare reform bill action.
      With the knowledge that people in the work related assessment group will face workfare without time limit it is even more important that accessibility information is available to ensure that everyone can work out if they can attend and knows that they are welcome and that we will do what we can to accomodate varying needs.

      This information has been a bit late in coming because when we started to plan things here we were looking at doing a demo towards the end of March, but events have overtaken us and we are just trying to catch up 🙂

      If there is any information that you feel is missing, please tell us – this is a learning process for us, and especially as someone who would be coming from outside of Birmingham, it would be good to know whether there is information missing that you’d like to have.

      If you come down from Manchester that would be amazing, but I know from attending the DPAC/UKUncut action just how much demonstrations and travel can take out of peoples’ health. There is an action happening in Liverpool, organised by Liverpool Uncut, and I have heard that there are people planning in Manchester, so there may be events closer to you. Hopefully other groups will publish accessibility information as well, I think it is something that will happen more frequently.

      If you are not well enough to travel on the day, you can help by publicising reports of the events.. we are also chatting on the main Boycott Workfare mailing list about what things people who can’t attend an event can do on the day to support us and should have a few ideas soon.

  3. Pingback: Boycott Workfare Demonstration Report and Photos | Birmingham Against The Cuts

  4. Pingback: Kings Heath Against Workfare | Birmingham Against The Cuts

  5. Pingback: Workfare Actions Around Birmingham in April | Birmingham Against The Cuts

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