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Disability Rights UK- Press Portayal of Disabled People Report

The report is available to down load on the Disability Rights UK  website at:

The main findings included: • Over three quarters (77%) of you could cite negative press articles about disabled people – but only a third (35%) could name a positive story; • 94% suggested press portrayal of disability equality issues was ‘unfair’; • 76% said the volume of negativity was ‘significantly increasing’; • 91% said there was a link between negative press portrayal of disabled people and rising hostility/hate crime; and • Four in ten (42%) specifically suggested the Government was responsible for rising press negativity and hostility towards disabled people.

Disability Rights UK said this is ‘a worrying scenario and one we hope the Government will now address in the context of the positive public response to the Paralympics as well as the ‘Disability Strategy’ (across Government) which is due out imminently.’

They are also using the report to influence the shape of the new Press Complaints Commission and hope it will ensure: • an adequate balance/redress for correcting inaccurate stories and articles (i.e. a whole page apology for a whole page of inaccuracy!); • swift action to tackle inaccurate, misleading or discriminatory articles; • independence from editors (but funded by the press); and • group action against articles where individuals can’t/won’t seek redress (i.e. organisations being able to tackle poor journalists).