I have been made aware of Bns Williams’ positive mention in the Lords, of my enforcement of the Equality Act.
There are good examples of disabled people enforcing the duty to make reasonable adjustments. Noble Lords will no doubt have heard of the case of Mr Paulley, who has successfully enforced the Act on many occasions.
I wish to specifically refute that the Equality Act works for disabled people or that it is enforceable in any realistic manner by anybody.
Nearly all disabled people have little to no prospect of enforcing their rights under the Equality Act.
I go on to talk about some of the barriers disabled people experience that scupper any chance of enforcing their rights, including internalised oppression, no serious attempt at providing education, lack of personal assistance, the lack of legal representation, the impenetrable nature of the court system, lack of legal funding, the financial and other risks, the energy and other costs – to name but a few. I quoted Cloisters Chambers’ input into the Equality Bill,
Cloisters [Chambers] point out that in any event, relying upon individuals to bring about systemic change through individual litigation places a heavy burden upon disabled people who, in many instances, experience discrimination on a daily basis which it would be time consuming and exhausting to challenge on each and every occasion.
That is every bit as much the case now as it was when Cloisters said it in 2009.
Not only does the Equality Act not work for disabled people in general, it doesn’t work for me. It takes an inordinate amount of time and energy for me to take cases. It affects me profoundly. I risk financial ruination every time I take a case. I don’t always win, and even when I do, it doesn’t achieve anything like systematic change in service provision to disabled people.
Where was this? I hate being used as evidence the system works. It pigging doesn’t. Not even for the 0.001% of us who can take cases.
— Doug Paulley (@kingqueen3065) November 24, 2017
I object to my experience being used as any form of evidence that the Equality Act is enforceable by any disabled person. It isn’t.