My name is Edward Stanton. I am the Chairperson of People First in Glasgow. I am 72 now, and was born in Glasgow, in Kinning Park. I have lived in Glasgow all my life. Glasgow has got a lot better for disabled people over the years. It's a lot better now than when I was young.
People First is a collective self-advocacy organisation for people with learning difficulties. It is run by people with learning difficulties. We meet in groups and support each other to speak up for ourselves. A lot of people don't have the confidence to do that on their own. We try to give each other that confidence.
People First has helped me a lot in the past. It has supported me to live a more independent life. We campaign for all people with learning difficulties to be more independent.
I've been involved in a lot of campaigning. We've campaigned for better transport services; for an end to segregation in schools – I think all kids should go to the same school – we're all human; for long-stay hospitals to be closed down.
The wheelchair route was my idea because I'm always out and about. You should be able to get all over Glasgow in a wheelchair. But you can't because the pavements are awful. Kerbs are too high and there's pot-holes everywhere – they can damage your wheelchair.
The idea was for something like a cycle route. It will be marked out and signposted. Anyone will be able to follow the route and know it is suitable for a wheelchair. And you won't have to worry about motors. It is only small to begin with, but I hope it will go all over Glasgow in the end.
This is a good example of these Citizen Leadership principles:
- Being disabled isn’t a reason not to be an activist – it’s a reason to be an activist
- 6. Equality
- It’s wrong that people in wheelchairs should be less free than anyone else to get about. Money spent on roads and pavements should benefit everybody
- 8. Wider Benefit
- This wheelchair route will be for anyone in Glasgow that can’t get about safely just now