Seizing Opportunities: Bringing Invisible Disabilities into the Light

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Autumn 2019

In the UK, there are approximately 13.9 million people living with a disability, however only 8% of this figure use a wheelchair. Awareness of invisible disabilities is suddenly coming to the forefront of society’s view, and the impact of this is starting to be seen in all areas of general life. How can you, as an event manager, encourage this transition?

Credit: C. Bushell

This change is being fostered from the significant headway that has been made in legislation for people with invisible disabilities. On the 30th August 2019, the blue badge government scheme expanded to incorporate people with less visible disabilities in order to allow for more accessible transport. This is the largest change to affect the blue badge scheme in 50 years. As fundamental steps have already been taken within the events industry to make our experiences more accessible to those with disabilities, we now have the opportunity to expand upon this.

A major advantage that event managers have is the flexible nature that events provide, and this can allow you to reach for that pre-eminent position within the changes in society. This encompasses developments in technology, cultural and social trends, political issues and legislation. This diligence to the needs of your consumers can mean the difference between success or failure.

Credit: LinkedIn

How is this legislation affecting the UK?

Following this change in legislation, organisations and industries all over the nation are striving to adapt their products and services to make improvements for their consumers with invisible disabilities.  In order to comply with the 2010 Equality Act, it is a legal requirement to ensure that all events are accessible to all members of society. Consideration therefore needs to be taken to allow attendees, staff and suppliers to participate and work within events. Without this accessibility and keeping up to date with best practises, legal action for discrimination could be pursued towards the venue or event organisation.

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. My Blue Badge arrived today! This means that I (or someone who is driving me) am entitled to park in special accessible parking facilities/ spaces. This will be massively helpful in more ways than one on days when I am low on spoons and struggling with my health. Although I am generally okay with walking, there are days when my symptoms make daily living tasks a challenge. Having a Blue Badge will mean that I can save spoons which I can then use to get me through more important tasks I need to achieve. • This might me on days when my Mum takes me to an appointment where this is no parking and I’d otherwise have to get public transport which is painful and stressful, especially in peak times. Or on occasions when my PoTS, fatigue or pain are bad enough that having accessible parking might help take the edge off. Or on days when I am well enough to drive short distances (e.g to see the GP) but there is no free or close parking nearby, and I don’t have the means to be paying for expensive parking whilst I have no income. • This Badge also feels super validating because along with my Disabled Card, Freedom Pass, and PIP, my council and the government are showing recognition of my disabilities and the impact they have on my life. That even though they might not be visible, they are worthy of support from a system which is in most cases so hard to get the right support from when you have hidden disabilities or chronic conditions like mine. • If you live in London and think you are eligible for a Blue Badge I would highly recommend applying for one. A quick google of your council/ borough and their eligibility criteria will get you on your way. If you have already been allocated a Freedom Pass or get the higher rate of the Mobility part of PIP, I think you are automatically eligible 👍 • . . . . @ehlersdanlosuk @ehlers.danlos #ehlersdanlos #ehlersdanlossyndrome #EDS #POTS #chronicillness #london #spoonie #londontransport #zebrastrong #hEDS #disability #chronicallyill #chronicpain #invisibleillness #invisibledisability #londontravel #butyoudontlooksick #bluebadge #posturalorthostatictachycardiasyndrome #hypermobility #disabledbadge #dysautonomia #disabilityrights

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Action already being taken.

All over the UK, organisations are working hard to adapt their products and services to make them more accessible to those with invisible disabilities, and now new ideas are flooding in. Predominantly, these changes are occurring in the retail and transport sectors with many tourist attractions beginning to follow suit.

  • Sunflower Lanyards have been introduced in the transport and retail sector. Places such as Heathrow Airport and Sainsbury’s have adopted these to discretely indicate the wearer may need additional support due to an invisible disability.
  • Inclusive/Quiet Hours are now a weekly occurrence at places such as Morrisons. During this dedicated time, music is switched off, use of the tannoy is avoided and check out beeps are turned down. 
  • Sensory facilities away from crowds have been introduced at Legoland, the first dedicated facility of its kind in a theme park, providing a calming environment for guests who require some quiet time away from crowds and loud noises.

Credit: Facebook

What action can the events industry take?

This is an opportunity for event managers to step up and draw upon the action that was taken in the retail and transport sectors to accommodate invisible disabilities.

  • Staff training is crucial to ensure the correct care and confident understanding of how to support invisible disabilities. This could be from awareness training to specialist training.
  • This could include having specialist marshals who are dedicated to the requirements and needs of this group of people. These staff members should be easily identifiable and easy to locate.  
  • Accessibility services such as the sunflower lanyards, quiet hours or sensory facilities can also be applied at many events and within venues.
  • Marketing material should be as clear and accurate as possible to allow for customers to have as much information as possible before the event. Additionally, this may give confidence to people with invisible disabilities and encourage them to attend.
  • Advance information on directions and facilities to be provided considerably before the event.
  • Risk assessments must be inclusive of understanding the needs of those with invisible disabilities.

This should be viewed as an opportunity rather than a challenge and will allow for your business to expand even further. By adopting some of the above suggestions, we can reach a whole new audience.

Credit: C. Bushell

Please let us know in the comments your thoughts, as well as any positive or negative experiences you have already had at events.


Danielle Rowe says:

The new approach that events are making to include and show support to all types of disabilities is outstanding. It only takes something small to make a big difference to someone’s life like recognising the sunflower lanyard. This blog really helps give an insight modern day approaches. My nephew has an invisible disability known as ADHD and I know if things like this were as important back when he were child then it probably would of made his early years a lot more easy for him.

s1501695 says:

Good Evening Danielle. Thank you for reading our blog and leaving your comment, it is greatly appreciated. It is lovely to hear that this is something that could benefit the ones that are close to you, and hopefully help many more people in the future.

Tori cox says:

Fantastic blog. I suffer from epilepsy so I very much agree when it comes to invisible disabilities. Really enjoyed reading this and it could affect so many people!

Joanna says:

Good evening Tori, thank you for reading our blog and leaving your comment. It is always greatly appreciated to hear that a topic so important to us is also very important to others.

Chris says:

As someone with autism, i think the ideas are good and very useful, but i think the public’s awareness, education and perception on the matter are the most important parts, as the challenges are almost always much easier to overcome with patience and understanding, and that some even are solved totally. I think however, assistance of any kind is a very good tool for a business to use to help and encourage people with such challenges to be involved with or make use of any service. Putting such measures in place is a much more manageable and very effective!

Joanna says:

Good evening Chris, thank you for taking the time to read our blog and for leaving your comment. It is precisely someone like you that we had in mind when deciding to take on this subject and try and improve the future. Awareness is key.

Rob Williams says:

This should be developed into a best practice process for the management of events. A standard that all organised events should have to meet as part of their licence to operate. A very well researched blog article that shows how easy it is to overlook opportunities to create a different approach for people with disabilities when you can’t see them.

Joanna says:

Hi Rob, thank you for reading and commenting on our blog. We agree that invisible disabilities should not be over looked and that the events industry should be enjoyed by everyone. If you have time, would you mind letting us know if there is anything you would like to see in a guide to best practice for event managers surrounding invisible disabilities?

Megan says:

This was such an interesting read!
I was not aware of these changes and I think the actions already put into place are great for people with invisible disabilities, and the event industry would really benefit from those actions too, allowing everyone to experience all the great events out there.
Lets hope these changes are made soon!

Joanna says:

Good evening Megan, thank you very much for taking the time to read our blog and leaving a comment. We are glad you enjoyed it, and hopefully with this blog, further awareness will be received and more practices will be adopted soon!

Paula says:

It is fantastic that progress in this is finally being made to give recognition and assistance to everyone with invisible disabilities but much more needs to done to educate the general population. It needs to be highlighted in schools to allow children to learn and accept this is part of life and help prevent the stigma that exists from continuing. My child could have benefited from this when he was younger but I’m so happy to see things moving forward for the better.

Joanna says:

Good evening Paula, thank you for taking the time to read our blog and leaving your comment. It is great to see that there is change happening but more can be done! Awareness and education are the next steps forward. Lets hope many other children can benefit from a positive change.

Cat says:

I think that when practices like these become commonplace across multiple industries then the acceptance of neurodivergence by the general public will massively improve! Thank you for this post.

Joanna says:

Good evening Cat, thank you very much for your feedback. With these practices changing within more sectors of society, it would be great if this development will affect the overall improvement for the public.

Jo says:

I feel signage can always be improved on at events and when travelling to/from them. At tube stations lifts aren’t always signposted, most have no toilets. Very busy events in halls can be a nightmare. Event organisers need to have more room and lower daily ticket limits to help with the sheer crowdedness of some of these events. I’ve been to beauty fairs and vegan fairs, they are always a nightmare, I end up having to leave as I get dizzy from the constantly being pushed around when shoulder to shoulder and surrounded by people pushing past, you can’t see your footing etc. No allowances are made at concerts for lining up to buy food/drink/merch. If you’re unable to stand for long periods you’re a bit stuck. There should be some way around this, not sure what/how though.

Joanna says:

Hi Jo, thank you for taking the time to read our blog post. We hope you found it interesting. We very much agree that there is still a long way to go into perfecting accessibility for those with hidden disabilities and you make some really interesting points regarding poor accessibility such as signage and toilets en-route – would you say that event managers could provide attendees with better local knowledge such as where accessible toilets are, which train stations to use (that have working lifts)? We also agree that crowds and queues can be very difficult and hope to see specialist marshals, out and about for the public to go to for guidance through the crowds and assistance in queues: or even, to go and queue for you!

Esther Hockley says:

As a teacher who regularly organises trips and visits for students including those with invisible disibilities, this is welcome news. I know that there are local theatre companies who arrange special shows where staff can ask for pauses and where they reduce the use of lights and sounds. If more venues and events can consider similar action, it will encourage teachers to have more trips for these children.

Joanna says:

Hello Esther, thank you very much for taking the time to read our blog, it is amazing to hear your experiences of this. It is wonderful that some theatres and venues are already adopting these practices and, hopefully, as awareness spreads this will become more commonplace in society. It is also fantastic to hear that this could effect so many areas of life and that this might influence the lives younger generations.

Fiona says:

Brilliant blog. Which hopefully will become best practise at all events in the future. Having hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy and Fibromyalgia hidden disabilities need this sort of attention to detail, in the world of events many things have been overlooked for to many years. This is a very well written article that hope fully all event managers will follow in the future.

Joanna says:

Hi Fiona, thank you for your comment! We hope Event Managers see the demand for this type of accessibility, as events are for all! You’re right, attention to detail is a key event management skill, and invisible disabilities shouldn’t be over looked.

Bethany says:

As a person with little to no personal experience with hidden disabilities I feel as if this article clearly and concisely helps me to understand how the events industry can move forward in supporting disabilities, hidden or not. Also is shows the ways in which the industry has moved forward already in making events accessible to all people and I think this is fantastic news.

Joanna says:

Hi Bethany, Thank you for taking the time to read our blog and leave a comment. It’s lovely to hear that, even though you have no personal experience with invisible disabilities, that you feel you have more of an understanding in how the Events industry has already and can continue to take steps to improve accessibility!

JANE says:

very interesting read and a very important subject. as someone with hemiplegia and other disabilities, and having children myself who have autism, its a very important subject to our family, that events are inclusive to allow for family days out etc. over the last 20 years things have become alot better, and gradual improvements have been made. while there is still a way to go, and some events are better than others things are going in the right direction, and hopefully will continue to do so. i think there does need to be a gold standard of good practice which all event providers should adhere too. this would stop discrepancy within different events and services.

Joanna says:

Hi Jane, thank you for your comment on our blog. We’re glad you’ve found it interesting, as it’s your family experience, that will help create events that are accessible for all! It’s fantastic that you feel that steps are already being taken and things have improved in the last 20 years, we hope it’s not another 20 until we have full accessibility in the industry. If you have time, would you mind letting us know what things you would include in the Gold standard rating, for the events industry?

Wendy says:

Fantastic blog! Wish more of this awareness had been around when my son was growing up. People with invisible difficulties can find things tough and every little thing that can be done to improve their lives is worth its weight in gold. Thanks for promoting awareness!

Joanna says:

Good evening Wendy, thank you for your comment on our blog. We’re glad you enjoyed it. We are doing our upmost to promote awareness on this topic as we can all agree, it is key to help improve the current situation!

Ann franks says:

Such an interesting read. I work with people who clearly have disabilities and have come face to face with difficulties when out and about at events so can only imagine how people with invisible difficulties get on. A small change can go along way to making an experience a pleasant one! Training and awareness on invisible dissabilities will help but also as humans in general we need to have more compassion and be more patient with people.

Joanna says:

Hi Ann,thank you for taking the time to read our blog. We agree that small changes can go along way in making events accessible and enjoyable for all. We believe staff training and, following recent comments, education in schools and workplaces could make more people aware of the challenges faced by those with both visible and invisible disabilities.

Tracy says:

Being a diabetic, a support worker and wife to someone who has daily issues with pain, this is a rather refreshing read. Staff training could definitely be a good thing, as across the board shop workers hardly speak let alone give any eye to eye contact. We have become a screen eyed society (myself included) and seem to have forgotten how to communicate with strangers. I hope this blog goes far and those with invisible illness become an all inclusive package countywide (maybe even worldwide) Good luck everyone xx

Joanna says:

Hi Tracy, thank you for reading our blog, and leaving a comment, dedicating your time to support others. We are glad you agree that staff training could make a huge impact on how to help those with hidden disabilities – diabetes and chronic pain are often overlooked, and we too hope this blog goes far enough to reach event managers and make invisible illnesses a consideration in event planning, design and execution.

Alana white says:

A great read! It’s great to see that events is moving forward with The times and doing there bit to make sure everyone is equally treated and included in everyday life activities like weddings,Parties or work conferences. I think staff training is key and very important for all staff, so if any staff are asked a question or need to know in detail the guest can be helped without causing stress or discomfort. I don’t think this gets enough attention or thoughts over other business. Reading this blog has therefore inspired me to start thinking about this in the salon I work, to insure client safety confidentiality and give them the best experience!

Joanna says:

Hi Alana, thank you for reading and leaving a comment. It’s lovely to hear how this blog has inspired you to think about invisible disabilities in your salon, there is some fantastic training available – you might find an autism awareness course really interesting. And you’re right – confidentially and consideration is key in making our experiences enjoyable for all!

Courtney says:

What an insightful and well written blog! As the organiser of FestABLE – a fully accessible specialist learning festival – I have seen first hand not only how important it is to make events accessible to all, but also how easy it is to make small but powerful adaptations to event practices.
However from experiences in other organisations I’ve noticed that there just isn’t the awareness at this stage for event managers to understand the demand and importance of such provision – do you think raising awareness will be enough to make change or do more serious measures need to be put in place to ensure event managers comply?

Joanna says:

Good evening Courtney, thank you for taking the time to read and comment on our blog. To hear about your experiences with FestABLE is great. We agree that small adaptations can help to open events to a wider audience and, to make sure that no one is excluded from an event they wish to attend. We hope that this blog will provide event managers with an insight into what they can do to ensure that their events are open to all. Whilst we recognise the importance of raising awareness of the issue. We think that measures do need to be put in place to ensure that event managers do comply.
We feel to start the ball rolling spreading awareness and education is the best way forward, if this is not successful that would be when more serious measures may need to be put in place.

Ellie Tetlow says:

Very interesting to read and very much a current issue that needs to be addressed! As a primary school teacher, I have a fairly good understanding of such invisible disabilities like ADHD and Autism and I understand and feel strongly about the importance of provision making and inclusion for children, and indeed adults, with these invisible disabilities. It may be interesting also to consider those who have speech, language and communication difficulties. The below is very much an example from where children and young people are concerned. However, this could certainly apply to adults too. I read an article not long ago, where a teacher took her class on a trip to a local art gallery. The class were taken on a guided tour around, however, the tour activities relied heavily upon spoken communication, in which the tour became somewhat inaccessible to children with speech, language and communication difficulties, including those who had English as an Additional Language (EAL). It could be argued that the teachers were mostly responsible for this, but I think it could have been useful if the tour guides organised more visual and hands-on activities for the children, in order to teach them about the artworks, especially as art in itself is such a visual experience. Something to consider for sure! I also watched a short clip on facebook not long ago, about a mother who has two Autistic children. She said in the clip that one day when she took her children to the supermarket, she parked in a disabled space, rightly so, as she had been granted a blue badge and for her children, it was safer to get in and out the car when there is more room between the cars. She said that as they were getting out of the car, a man approached them and started shouting at her claiming she was wrong to use a disabled space as all of them could move and walk fine. I think something needs to be done so that people, like the man in this scenario, have a better understanding and respect for those with invisible disabilities. More people need to be educated and aware! Thank you for raising and acknowledging this issue in your blog.

Joanna says:

Good evening Ellie. Thank you for your comment and for agreeing with us that this is a very current issue and needs to be spoken about. It’s interesting you mention teaching as that’s an industry that was not mentioned when we carried out our research, so thank you for bringing that to our attention. What am incredible example of invisible disabilities not being catered for and it just highlights how important it is for people to understand. Speech and language barriers is certainly something that we hope will be spoken about more, as like you explained, it can impact on someone’s experience which to us as event managers is not something we want to happen to our attendees. We really appreciate this insightful comment and hope more ways of combating this issue can be done! Thank you for your kind comments, we are glad you enjoyed reading the blog.

JSD91 says:

A hugely informative read. Very well written and researched.

Joanna says:

Good Afternoon, thank you for taking the time to read our blog. We appreciate the feedback.

Amy says:

It’s fantastic to hear that the events industry are starting to make a change allowing events to be assessable for all. Everyone should be able to enjoy an event no matter who they are.
Great read.

Joanna says:

Good afternoon Amy thank you for taking the time to read and comment on our blog. We agree that it’s great that event industry are making changes to include everyone in their events, but we’d love it if more could be done!

Ami says:

Absolutely outstanding post! The suggestions you have provided are excellent and I really hope the Events industry takes them on board and becomes more accessible and inclusive.

Joanna says:

Good morning Ami, we appreciate you taking the time to read and comment on our blog. We are glad you like the suggestions that we’ve provided and we also hope that they are taken on board by event managers and help to make more accessible to all members of society.

Andrea says:

One thing I have noticed is that at many venues, including event venues, accessible toilets are only accessible to those who are still able to walk. I include myself in that category at the moment, but in years to come, I will probably have to use a wheelchair. I have used a wheelchair when shopping, and was fortunate that the accessible toilet I needed to use had enough space for me to transfer easily.
This isn’t the case with many toilets, including one that I use regularly.
Accessible toilets are often used as baby changing rooms as well, with changing tables taking up the space that should be left for a wheelchair. Or, worse, used as general storage rooms. I’ve been in so-called accessible toilets that barely had room for my walking frame, due to the clutter.

Joanna says:

Good afternoon Andrea, thank you for taking the time to read through our blog and leave us a comment about your own personal experiences at event venues. We are sorry to hear about your negative experiences and hope that this blog will help to raise awareness to event managers of what needs to be done to ensure that event facilities are accessible for all members of society. We hope that more can be done for people living with disabilities, to ensure that they do not experience difficulties when attending events and activities in their leisure time.

Sharon says:

I have several conditions that make it difficult to walk very far. I use a wheelchair, stick, mobility scooter and crutches depending on where I am going and how I am that day. I visit the theatres in London around 4 times a year, in Birmingham around 12 times a year, and in other parts of the country at various times. I am finding that it is becoming much easier to be heard, for help to be given, and for me to be able to attend without feeling like I am an inconvenience. It is so good to see that someone is also writing about it and making others aware! We are getting there, improvements are being made! Thank you for an excellent blog, well written and so informative!

Joanna says:

Good afternoon Sharon, thank you for taking the time to read our blog and for leaving a comment sharing your own experiences. We’re glad to hear that it is being made easier for you to do the things you enjoy- that’s great and exactly how it should be! We hope this continues. We’re glad that you’ve had a positive experience and we hope that this blog helps to increase these across the country and globally too!

Sharon Majek says:

The best and most thoughtful assistance I have received was at the Birmingham Hippodrome, which I attend regularly. I went to see the show ‘The Band’, with the music of Take That, so it was very loud, but their music is my guilty pleasure! I suffer with Tinnitus, and before the show had even started I was struggling with the noise of the audience (a lot of women and young children chatting with background music) and had my hands over my ears. One of the members of staff, a lovely young man, came over and asked if I was OK and would I like some earplugs as the music was very loud and he was worried I wouldn’t cope. I was so relieved as I was worrying I may need to leave and not see the show. That thoughtful and kind act meant I could enjoy the show and he even came and checked on my at the interval! A very hidden disability being catered for which made all the difference to me enjoying my evening! We are getting there, without a doubt!

Brendon Rowe says:

What an interesting and thought provoking article. I was unaware of some of the current initiatives being implemented to assist those with invisible disabilities, such as the sunflower lanyards. It’s always going to be difficult to change public perception, however if the events industry can adopt a “Code of best practice” making small changes to their planning & facilities, ensuring assistance is easily accessible and develop solutions for people with a wide range of invisible diabilities then the “general public” can continue to enjoy events and occasions without realising the difference. However for some these types of changes will make a world of difference, well done!

Joanna says:

Hello Brendon, thank you for your feedback and for joining in our discussion. We are so glad to hear that this blog has helped your awareness of these practices that are all ready in place and hopefully going forward these will increase significantly! Hopefully progress with these changes and with heightened awareness an immense difference will be adopted for so many people.

Kevin Deegan says:

Hi Nina Well Done this is a great Blog Thank you for your positive response to Our Invisible disabilities community on Facebook appreciated Also check out Winvisible who are campaigning hard raising awareness of Invisible disabilities and are working with Disabled People Against Cuts, I have several Invisible disabilities four are life threatening I applaude you for doing this blog thank you

Joanna says:

Good afternoon Kevin, thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on our blog! It is so amazing to hear your feedback and hopefully practices for inclusive events will improve moving forwards.

Mark Milburn says:

As an event manager I found this article very interesting. I run 2 scuba diving boats and create trips and various events. I suppose I am in a unique industry, one that legislation actually stops most disabilities, visible or not. Although calming to most, it is an alien and potentially dangerous environment without specialist training. People suffering with PTSD are actually helped by scuba diving, it is a major way of de-stressing. It is also often called ‘a quiet place’ by many who dive.

The Sunflower lanyard is a really good idea, it would help us spot someone who may have an invisible disability. It is nice to know it exists and what it means.

Joanna says:

Thank you so much for your feedback and for providing such a unique perspective! It is really great to consider how events such as yours can really benefit people with PTSD and hopefully moving forward more events such as this will start to emerge!

Rob Hockley says:

A very interesting read. I see a lot of children and young people with autism in my line of work. It is great to think that they will be able to access many more events if these approaches to hidden disabilities are widely implemented.

Joanna says:

Hi Rob, were glad you enjoyed reading our blog. We do hope that future events will be accessible to all – as everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy the events industry!

Gill Seymour says:

This blog was very useful as it informs us of all the new ways in which assistance is being provided for people with hidden disabilities. I had not heard of sunflower lanyards, which must be such a good way of indicating that help may be required. I have problems walking any distance, so the suggestion that marketing material should be clear and accurate is good, in order to give advance notice as to what facilities are available. The information you give was very clearly laid out.

Joanna says:

Good afternoon Gill, thank you so much for taking the time to read our blog and for leaving a comment. It is wonderful to hear that the point about marketing material would be useful for you and hopefully as more events and venues start to adopt these practices, events will be more accessible for all. Please may I ask if there is anything further that you would find beneficial at events?

Nadine Francis says:

What an interesting article that will help businesses take consideration for those with hidden disabilities. My niece has Autism, and I pray her future holds accessibility and acceptance. Thank you for raising the profile of this.

Joanna says:

Good evening Nadine many thanks for reading our blog and leaving a comment. We also hope that more will be done for people with invisible disabilities, like your niece, to make events and everyday life more accessible for all members of society.

This is a really informative article. It is well researched and easy to read. Raising awareness of invisible disabilities is so important as it makes people’s experiences in life more positive if people have more empathy and understanding towards their needs. My Dad has been diagnosed with MND and his disability has gone from invisible to clearly visible, so it is something close to my heart. I had heard of the sunflower lanyard scheme, having seen it in Sainsbury’s, this is a welcome development and would be great if it was adopted nationwide. Great article!

Joanna says:

Good evening Nathalie, thank you for taking the time to read our blog and leave a comment. We agree that it’s important to raise awareness of invisible disabilities and hope that this blog has helped make event managers and also members of society aware of what can be done to make events and everyday life accessible for all.
It’s great that you’ve heard of the sunflower lanyard scheme, we hope that we can spread awareness to help others through our blog about it, and hope that it continues to be implemented in other industries and events worldwide.

Ben says:

A highly interesting article to read. Also provides cost effective ways of managing this aspect of inclusivity at any events I run. Interested to see how I can incorporate this into motorsport. Ben

Joanna says:

Good afternoon Ben, thank you for taking the time to read and comment on our blog. We are delighted to hear that you’re thinking of ways to include all members of society in motorsport events you run – please let us know how you get on.

Becky says:

As a Mum to a young child with severe hidden additional needs, I found this an interesting read. Most of the information contained within this article I am already aware of. However, I feel that in society as a whole, even though there is much more awareness of hidden disability, there is still not enough information and education. I was naive to it until it became my every day and changed my whole life. This is a well researched and well written piece that should be used as best practice in communities. Maybe then, people would be less judgemental and more considerate to the cause.

Joanna says:

Good morning Becky, thank you for leaving a comment on the blog. We agree that there still isn’t enough information readily available and think that overall, especially after many of the comments on the blog suggesting the same thing, that education and training surrounding invisible disabilities is key for progress.

Richard Waring says:

Good to read about the improvements being made in the events industry, as someone who suffers from hearing loss I’ve experienced unsympathetic staff. Any training that makes people aware of hidden disabilities will improve staff empathy and service, Great Ric

Joanna says:

Good morning Ric, thank you for reading our blog and leaving a comment. As yours and many other comments have suggested there is a real lack of education surrounding hidden disabilities. We believe education and training would really boost understanding and empathy, which in turn would result in events that are accessible and enjoyable for all! We hope in the future, you and everyone else is met by staff that can support you correctly to ensure you enjoy the event you’re attending!

UoG Noise Blog says:

Such an important topic, one that needs to be highlighted more, not many people understand about invisible illness unless they have one themselves or know someone who does. Any training to make event managers more aware of invisible illnesses would be a great help to those that suffer. Also a very clear and concise blog!

Joanna says:

Good morning, thank you for taking the time to read and leave a comment on our blog. We agree it is a very important issue and more should be done to raise awareness of invisible disabilities, we hope that this blog helps. We also agree that training for event managers and staff is also very key, and should be implemented more in organisations.

Jasmine says:

I found reading this article really comforting to see the change that is occurring to help people with chronic illnesses!

I personally find university overwhelming and tiring when there is so many different stimuli and hustle and bustle so a quiet area with gentle lighting would be greatly appreciated for someone in my position with ME/CFS. This is the case for events and much more and would encourage me to attend even on bad days.

Some great ideas in this article!

Joanna says:

Hi Jasmine, Thank you for leaving a comment on our blog. We agree that it’s not just events where these suggestions could be implemented – we’d love to see university’s get on board too!

Luke says:

A very well researched blog to highlight hidden disabilities and how the approach to dealing with these in the events industry as well as other organisations could be changed. A true eye opener.

Joanna says:

Hi Luke, thank you for reading and leaving a comment on our blog. We hope that all industries, not just the events industry, makes a positive change so that they can ensure everyone has the best experience.

Comments are closed.