In response to this photograph I sent an e-mail to the Lord Mayor of Sydney at the beginning of the month;
I’m just writing to express my concern about your ankle. I was sorry to hear and see that you have ended up using a wheelchair for the time being. I hope that things are on the improve.
While I’m sure it has been painful, I’m also sure that the experience has been equally frustrating and an eye opening one as well in relation to inclusion and the lack of ease with which people even with temporary disabilities and impairments get around and are incorporated in a REAL sense in the life of the City and State.
While I worked there, the City made inroads towards inclusion. Particularly with the development of the Inclusion Action Plan. That’s a great thing. It’s also great to see that it has continued after my departure in June last year. I actually think it’s more of an attitudinal issue now; one which you as a leader of the City, and someone with your own recent experience to refer to, can help correct. It was particularly creditworthy that you were prepared to be photographed at a prominent event using a wheelchair. this raised the profile of the issue tremendously, and I was touched. This demonstrates the clear message that impairments must be seen as a part of life and a part of the experience of the City.
I am not expecting a response from city staff to this e-mail. I just wanted to wish you well with your recovery, and a long memory of your experience. If I can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Over the weekend, I received a postcard which read like this;
I appreciate receiving your e-mail and comment. And I hope you are well.
Sincerely Clover Moore.
Short and sweet but nonetheless hand written! Given I used to work there I think it’s quite an achievement that the staff didn’t reply!
Today I am going to a presentation on the new building standards that will if I’m being cynical not do much to improve access to the city. Personal experiences are our way forward. Let’s hope so anyway!
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