Am I worth less than you?
Do I not matter?
Do I not have a place in this world?
I wake every day and want to do the same things as you.
I want to go to the same places as you.
I want to live a good life.
I want to fit in.
I want to be wanted.
I want to be free to go wherever I want, whenever I want.
When I was a baby, there were facilities everywhere to ensure my safety, health and wellbeing. If you have a baby, you probably expect those facilities too.
But we are not all equal.
We are not all given an equal right to access.
We are not all provided with all we need for our dignity.
We are not all welcome to go wherever we want.
I am a child.
Eleven years old.
I cannot stand or walk.
My bones break easily.
Simple things, for you, are harder for me.
Even something as simple as using the toilet isn’t easy for me.
I need a hoist to lift me from my wheelchair.
I need a long changing table to lay down on so that I can get ready to use the toilet.
I have a harness which can be used to hoist me onto the toilet.
And then I can “go”, just like you do!
I know you “go” too, it isn’t a secret!
But can you imagine having to talk about it to people?
Having to explain your needs?
I need two extra pieces of equipment in the toilet. That is all.
Some places have understood and are keen to improve.
Some have made changes straight away because they were good people.
But others have ignored me.
Some have simply said they will not install them.
Not small places.
Supermarkets, theme parks, theatres, towns…
When they say that they have no plans to make changes, despite knowing that I can’t come otherwise, they are really telling me to stay away.
They are telling me that I don’t matter.
One day I might believe them.
Children shouldn’t be afraid to go out but, all too often, I am.
If you haven’t already signed this petition, please do it now.
All I want, is what you already have. Please support me in having it too.