New podcast is an in-depth look at the challenges and opportunities facing the disabled community
Over the past few years, there has been an incredible rise in global consciousness about social justice. But there’s been one exceptionally large group that’s been mostly absent from the conversation, people with disabilities.
The World Health Organization estimates there are 1.2 billion people with disabilities across the globe, which accounts for 15% of the total human population.
“To truly create an accessible and equitable world, a place where everyone feels safe and has the courage to be themselves, we have work to do,” Sophie Morgan, British Television Presenter, and disability advocate says on the first episode of the “Equal Too” podcast. “We have to change the law. Transform culture. Rebuild our cities. Increase visibility. And to do so we must empower everyone to be involved.”
As activists such as Morgan work to change public consciousness surrounding the issues facing 1.2 billion people with disabilities, they face a major question. What are the biggest challenges and what work is needed to drive equality?
— sophie morgan (@sophie morgan)
To address these pressing concerns, Harder Than You Think, the team behind the Emmy-award winning Netflix documentary Rising Phoenix, and P&G Studios launched “Equal Too: Achieving Disability Equality” a 6-part podcast that aims to answer these pressing questions by talking to disability activists, athletes, politicians, and those working to make the world more accessible.
What’s unique about this podcast is that 61% of its team of producers, guests, and contributors identify as disabled.
The podcast recently wrapped up its sixth and final episode so now is a great time to binge-listen to this compelling podcast that attempts to create a cohesive agenda for people with disabilities in the wake of one of the most successful Paralympic Games to date.
The show is hosted by Morgan who sustained a T6 spinal cord injury in a traffic accident in 2003, resulting in paralysis from the chest down.
Morgan was a lead host for Channel 4’s Paralympics coverage.
— sophie morgan (@sophie morgan)
Throughout the six episodes, Morgan took a look back at the history and the legacy of the Paralympic movement and the impact it’s had on host cities and beyond. She also spoke with actress Jameela Jamil (“The Good Place”) who has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a group of disorders that affect connective tissue, about ableism in Hollywood.
“For someone who maybe has just found that they have a disability, that someone they love does, or they want to be an ally for people with disabilities, this is a perfect series for you,” Jamil says. “It’s full of very real conversations, but they’re incredibly entertaining, too.”
Morgan also had a conversation with Keely Cat Wells who runs a talent agency for disabled talent and Yoshihiko Kawauchi, an architect and wheelchair user who advised Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 on venue construction.
After six episodes, the show’s co-producer, Sinead Burke, is proud that she and Morgan were able to achieve the show’s ultimate goal of inclusivity.
“I think it’s been so brilliant to have six different threads of conversations under the umbrella of disability,” she said on episode 6, “The Decade Ahead.” “When we began this podcast we had lots of conversations back and forth about who the audience was. Was it non-disabled people? Was it disabled people? Or was it allies? Was it athletes? One of the things we’ve been really considerate around is making sure that across these six episodes that we appeal to listen to amplify and bring questions to each of those audiences.”
Morgan boiled the far-reaching effort down to one big takeaway. People with disabilities need greater representation in the places where decisions are being made.
“I feel that the next part of this journey to take that giant leap forward, not slowly incremental changes, we need to see disabled people in decision-making roles,” she said in episode 6.
“We need to see disabled people across the board because then we don’t need to present our argument for why you need to be represented or why you should be in the room,” she added. “Somebody will get it already. The paradigm shift will happen organically.”
To be a part of the new push towards equality for the 15% of humanity living with a disability, listen to ‘Equal Too: Achieving Disability Equality’ now on iHeart Radio or wherever you get your podcasts.
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