Disability Awareness in Action
Resource Kit No. 3
Published by © Disability Awareness in Action, All rights reserved
Download the "Campaigns
Kit" as a PDF file (120 KB)
Example 2: National Integration Week
The first National Integration Week (NIW) was 11-17 May 1992.
The Centre for Studies on Integration in Education (CSIE) in the United
Kingdom works to end segregated education and to support the full participation
of all children, with appropriate support, in the educational and social
life of ordinary schools. National Integration Week provides a time focus
to the year-round work of the Centre.
Two full-time staff were responsible for most of the work. One part-time
project worker and two part-time volunteers also worked on the campaign.
Following the formal decision in April 1991 to hold NIW, by the CSIE Council
and staff, planning began in September 1991.
Staff produced a leaflet inviting organisations to take part. A print-run
of 70,000 was distributed to schools, colleges, social services, parents'
groups, voluntary organisations, Members of Parliament and CSIE contacts.
Lists and labels were supplied by mailing companies in addition to CSIE's
own mailing lists.
Volunteers and staff prepared half of the envelopes for this mailshot. Mailing
companies did the rest. Different groups were targeted with individual letters,
written and signed by staff, inviting them to take part in NIW and enclosing
the leaflet. If they wanted to take part, they had to fill in a form stating
the basic details of their planned event and endorsing the aims of the Week.
The design and printing by a commercial firm of the new NIW logo and letterhead
was arranged. This was to be used for all NIW correspondence. A filing system
for application forms was set up, giving details of local NIW events.
Press releases were sent to the national and local media announcing plans
for the Week. An audio-taped promotion of NIW was compiled and distributed
to radio stations. A "brainstorming" session for ideas for CSIE
events, plus hopes and dreams for the Week, was held. Four months before
the Week, an advance press briefing for selected media people was set up.
Materials for it were prepared. A follow-up letter was sent to those who
did not turn up.
Staff started to collect family cases (battles for integration) for use
by the media. The CSIE national events were agreed and staff divided responsibility
for organising and seeing each through to completion. Volunteers were coordinated.
Discussions were held with commercial designers, typesetters and printers
on production of the NIW magazine and merchandise.
Staff finished writing most of the NIW magazine, selected pictures for it
and arranged contributions from other people. A list of all local NIW events
was compiled for the magazine from forms returned to CSIE. The organisers
of each event were contacted by phone to check the proposed entry. All material
was sent on computer disks to a design firm. After much checking, rewriting,
redesigning and work with the design firm to ensure a high standard, the
NIW magazine was finally completed.
Staff liaised with the organisers of the concert to close the Week about
how to set it in the context of NIW. Posters were sent out to local event
organisers. The NIW magazine was sent out to organisers and to a wide range
of other people (with appropriate individual letters). A small NIW opening
reception was arranged and invitations sent out.
A general press release promoting National Integration Week and the magazine
was written and sent out in the hope of getting more advance stories. A
more specific press release with a 'hard' news story on segregation statistics
was sent out, to be published on the first day of NIW.
A large number of daily phone calls about NIW were dealt with at this time.
This had been the case throughout the preparation period but it became extremely
busy at the end of April and beginning of May.
CSIE staff worked with art students to design and make an NIW display to
be moved around to different national events during the Week.
Hospitality was arranged for overseas colleagues arriving for NIW and other
UK integration events. Portable phones for the Week for the three main workers
were arranged and people's tasks were confirmed. Transport was arranged.
Full details were filled in on the wall diary so that everyone knew what
Requests for media advance interviews were met and arrangements made to
take part in live TV and radio interviews during the Week. There were many
last minute inquiries from the media and others to be dealt with.
The Week was launched - live on a national television breakfast news programme,
at 6 am on 11 May 1992.
Thank-you letters and a set of printed and stapled cuttings about NIW, from
newspapers, journals and magazines, were sent out to all local organisers
and others interested in the Week. An NIW scrapbook was compiled. Details
of all the local event organisers were added to the CSIE mailing lists to
receive new integration information. Visits were planned to local organisers
to see their integration in practice and to have informal discussions.
Activities Suggested for NIW
The "Time Capsule". The capsule, to be opened in the year 2020,
contains a description of the current levels of segregation of children.
CSIE believes today's picture will contrast starkly with the position in
2020 when it is hoped that all disabled children and young people will be
educated in local mainstream schools and colleges with appropriate support.
The capsule will also contain the Integration Charter. This event raises
publicity about integration in an entertaining and thought-provoking way.
It emphasises how the past is often seen as more barbaric than the present
and encourages us all to think about how we will be judged in the future.
- Writing whole-school policies, with the aim of schools becoming fully
inclusive of all local children and adults. Pupils from 'special' schools
for disabled children were asked to act as consultants in drafting these
- Concerts, exhibitions of pictures, plays, recordings, poetry evenings.
- Training days that promote integration at parents' group meetings.
- Leaflets that inform people of local progress.
- Public debates with the local education and social services departments,
discussing new policy statements promoting integration.
- Conferences for teachers and other education professionals.
- Integrated sports events.
- Meetings between mainstream school or college governing bodies and
the governors of special schools and colleges to discuss integration and
ways of reducing segregation, including the employment of disabled teachers.
- Foreign speakers coming to talk about their experiences and the situation
in their own country.
4. Longer-Term Campaigns
Successful Long-Term Campaigns
If a long-term campaign is going to work, you need to recognise that:
Example 1: Equalisation of Opportunities Legislation
- It's unlikely that anything will be achieved in the short-term. It
took several years of campaigning before disabled people in the United States
got the Americans with Disabilities Act.
- Set an approximate time-span for a particular campaign.
- Nothing will be achieved without substantial support from disabled
people, both as individuals and collectively through the disability movement.
- Keep members and the general public up-to-date with your activities.
- Support must be nationwide. Political representatives must feel the
same political pressure whether they come from urban centres or rural areas.
- Organise letter-writing by grassroots members to representatives.
- Substantial coordination is needed. A campaign coordinator should
be responsible for this.
- Elect a coordinator and a campaign committee.
- Substantial financial resources may be required for a long-term campaign
seeking the enactment of new or revised legislation.
- Research sources of revenue and draw up a funding proposal.
The Southern African Federation of Disabled People (SAFOD) was formally
begun in Durban, Republic of South Africa, in September 1986.
At that time, eight out of the ten national states which make up southern
Africa were represented, the exceptions being war-torn Angola and Mozambique.
(Mozambique has since joined the Federation.)
The meeting adopted a Constitution (revised in 1987) and elected the first
honorary officers of the new organisation. Joshua Malinga, then chair of
the National Council of Disabled People of Zimbabwe, was elected as SAFOD's
first secretary general for a period of four years.
SAFOD began as a movement of disabled people for self-representation. self-help
development and political unification. from the grassroots upwards. SAFOD's
basic aim is to create an active, organised movement of disabled people.
Human development takes place through participation in the social, political,
economic and cultural activity of the community. The new movement stood
for rights and not charity; it stood clearly against discrimination, poverty
and privilege and in favour of equalisation of opportunities. It confronted
the very relationship of those who give and those who receive, striking
a blow against specialised service provision and welfare benevolence.
In 1988, SAFOD produced its first six-year Regional Development Plan. SAFOD's
regional bulletin, Disability Frontline, has been produced regularly for
a number of years, keeping members and others aware of SAFOD's aims, activities
One of SAFOD's aims is to encourage equalisation of opportunities legislation
in each of the countries in which it has a member organisation. This is
a long-term strategy, requiring both awareness-raising and more direct influence
of political figures.
Conscientisation and Public Education Programme (COPE)
Each of the member federations and national associations that make up SAFOD
have on-going programmes to build awareness among disabled and non-disabled
These include integrated community clubs and activities, interviews on radio
and television and in newspapers. Among the less conventional tactics was
a disabled person walk-roll-crawl-a-thon in a central city street in Malawi,
where demonstrations are illegal.
The most effective public education is showing the active integration and
participation of disabled people in their communities.
In Mozambique, Festival ADEMO provided a week of activities including an
official ceremony to honour the heroes of Mozambique; a meeting with the
President; public meetings in the barrios (suburbs) throughout the week;
a series of interviews in newspapers and on radio and television. The week
ended with two fund-raising concerts featuring the famous blind South African
musician, Steve Kakana. ADEMO also provided the national fair with a restaurant
which was staffed entirely by disabled persons, including the manager, waiters
and cooks, whose culinary skills lured several Mozambican dignitaries including
Another important element of public awareness building is networking with
non-disabled organisations. In Lesotho, a representative of the National
Federation of Disabled People sits on the Council of non-governmental organisations
(NGOs) to promote the inclusion of disabled people in all NGO activities.
In South Africa, the Disabled People of South Africa women's representative
has broken new ground by being elected to the Steering Committee of a national
coalition of women's organisations. Their task is to make sure that women's
rights, including those of disabled women, are entrenched in the ANC Constitution
for a "new South Africa".
SAFOD has been able to lift the status of disabled people by creating awareness
of their issues, aims and potential. SAFOD's impact thus extends far beyond
those people directly involved in its activities. SAFOD seminars and opinions
are publicised regularly through invitations to the media. Locally, SAFOD
supports public awareness building, among disabled people in particular,
through Disability Frontline.
SAFOD has an Equalisation of Opportunities Legislation Programme ("EQUILEG"),
which focuses on encouraging equalisation of opportunities legislation in
all its member countries. SAFOD believes that the only way disabled people
can achieve equal rights is through legislation. The programme has a five-person
committee, headed by two lawyers with visual impairments (one from Lesotho
and one from South Africa) and supported by three SAFOD workers, which has
travelled to member countries.
SAFOD began its campaign by organising a seminar of disabled people and
The governments of Mozambique, Lesotho and Zambia are all working on legislation;
in South Africa, both the government and the African National Congress (ANC)
are taking part.
Legislation was passed in Zimbabwe in 1992, supported by a commission of
disabled people's representatives. The commission regulates the new legislation
and reports directly to the minister for disabled persons.
Example 2: Anti-Discrimination Legislation Campaign
A number of voluntary organisations have been campaigning for anti-discrimination
legislation (ADL) in the United Kingdom for more than six years.
The British Council of Organisations of Disabled People (the DPI national
assembly in the United Kingdom) has taken a leading role, putting together
an action plan, commissioning research and producing a book, Disabled People
in Britain and Discrimination: A Case for Anti-Discrimination Legislation.
Civil Rights Bill
A civil rights bill is currently before Parliament, although at the time
of writing (mid-1993) it did not have government backing and was therefore
unlikely to be passed.
Last time the bill went through Parliament, in 1983, there were still divisions
among the voluntary organisations. An umbrella group, Voluntary Organisations
for Anti-Discrimination Legislation (VOADL), was formed in 1985/6 to coordinate
lobbying and action.
The BCODP Campaign Committee
BCODP set up a National Campaign Committee to oversee the management of
the ADL campaign. Its responsibilities include:
A programme of activities in which member organisations and disabled individuals
were to be asked to participate was made available, with the dates of national
and regional demonstrations, lobbying and letter-writing campaigns, and
- supervising and supporting campaign work
- making sure that information reaches member organisations and other
- making sure that all demonstrations are properly coordinated and resourced
- making sure all strategies identified in the final plan are carried
Though it is obvious to most disabled people that we face blatant discrimination
in almost every area of our lives, it was necessary for BCODP to carry out
a research project to show the government that this is the case.
The main document (of 250 pages) was published in book form: Disabled People
in Britain and Discrimination: A Case for Anti-Discrimination Legislation.
The book details discrimination in the major areas of British life: education,
employment, health, housing, recreation, transport.
A summary booklet was distributed to every BCODP delegate, to key government
ministers and departments and to the Parliament libraries.
Leaflets and information packs were printed, based on the findings of the
report, and distributed to member organisations and individuals.
BCODP's priorities for keeping up constant media pressure on the issue of
BCODP Action Plan
- setting up formal links with national newspapers
- asking them to identify reporters who will take an interest in the
- setting up links with the main news and documentary programmes and
the regular disability programmes on radio and television
- identifying the disability press and using it to pass on information
to disabled people
- starting a Rights Not Charity newsletter, (published every two months,
with updates on progress, forthcoming action, etc.), free to BCODP member
organisations and available to individuals and other organisations who belong
to the "supporters of BCODP" scheme
- holding a big launch of the campaign (to attract maximum publicity),
consisting of a press conference in the morning and an afternoon meeting
of BCODP members, Members of Parliament (MPs), the Confederation of British
Industry, the Trades Union Congress, government departments and voluntary
- Decide on demands.
- Set up meetings with the three main political parties, to find Out
if they support ADL.
- Publish the results of these discussions and negotiations in Rights
- Set up a meeting with the Minister for Disabled People to discuss
- Find out what level of support he or she would lend to demands for
- Write to every MP to establish whether they support ADL in principle.
- Publish the results, including MPs' names, in Rights Not Charity.
- (Disabled people can then be clear on who to write to and who to vote
- Arrange a series of "Rights Not Charity" demonstrations
over a two-year time span. (Action to take place somewhere in Britain at
least every six weeks, with a minimum of two national demonstrations to
be held in 1992.)
- Draw up a schedule of lobbying which will involve people attending
MPs' surgeries, organisations speaking up whenever MPs appear in public,
a series of small national lobbies.
- Coordinate a letter-writing campaign by individual disabled people
to their own MPs.
BCODP has actively and successfully sought support from various organisations.
The Law Society carried out a study on the likely effectiveness of ADL in
Britain. This had nothing to do with the moral justification for legislation.
It was concerned only with whether ADL could work in practice. After the
study was finished, the Law Society gave complete support to ADL.
Given the size, scope and probable length of the campaign, it was clear
that substantial financial resources were required. Funding is needed to
cover both the central costs (such as workers' salaries, offices) and core
costs (administration, publicity, etc.), as well as the logistical costs
involved in arranging successful demonstrations.
BCODP set up a Campaign Fund to meet these costs, setting a target of raising
£250,000 over two years. The following sources of funding were identified:
- Organisations for disabled people (not made up of and run by disabled
people), who say they support BCODP, were to be asked to make donations
to show their true levels of support. Lists of contributors were to be published
in newsletters, as well as those who did not contribute.
- Appeals made to other charities and voluntary organisations, such
as Shelter, Age Concern, etc.
- Appeals made to other organisations, such as the Trades Union Congress,
Confederation of British Industry, Association of Local Authorities, Association
of District Councils, the Scottish Office, the Welsh Office, Councils on
Disability and professional institutes.
- Various trust funds.
- Appeals to members and individuals (through newsletters) to contribute
if they could afford to.
- "Rights Not Charity" rock concert.
- Marketing operation selling T-shirts, books, badges, etc. (to publicise
the issues and raise money).
continue...Stage Three Drawing up an Action Plan