Hi! I’m Mia (they/them), a third year History student who is multiply disabled and neurodiverse. Last year, I developed the new Disability Studies course, successfully representing the disabled community on an institutional level to staff and the wider University community. I would love to expand on this advocacy as your Disabled Students’ Officer next year! I aim to create an accessible and inclusive Edinburgh that brings justice to all disabled students, which is more needed in these times than ever.
Check out my Facebook page here for more information about my policies and to stay up to date on my campaign!
My main goals for the 2021-2022 academic year are:
- Intersectional liberation: Work closely with the other Liberation Officers, Vice President Welfare, and Counselling Service to ensure students have better, more compartmentalised access to identity-affirming, culturally competent mental health care.
- Hybrid-learning that (actually) works: Push for the continuation of an online learning option post-Covid that would ensure continued accessibility for disabled students. This will involve universally implementing accessible education policies that I have successfully established for the Disability Studies module: universally recorded lectures, virtual attendance options, non-speaking participation options, and interactive, accessible course materials.
- Accessible Adjustments: Restructure the Learning Adjustments and Special Circumstances procedures so that the onus is no longer on already marginalised disabled students to keep applying for the help they deserve with long-term conditions, and include more adjustment options for Postgraduate students.
- Breaking down barriers: Work toward remodelling the Student Disability Service to a self-operating and internally-funded model that would bypass the government’s inaccessible bureaucratic systems. This would allow more students, especially international students ineligible for certain funding, to access vital support much more quickly.
- Mandatory Staff Training: Lobby for mandatory, comprehensive accessibility training for staff and tutors across all Schools, with particular note to how conditions such as Specific Learning Differences, mental health, and neurodiversity impact students’ academic engagement and performance.
- Mandatory Society Training: Establish mandatory, comprehensive accessibility training for online and in-person society events to ensure disabled and neurodiverse students have no barriers between their social life.
- Equal Access to Housing: Campaign for funding to help those disabled students for whom accessible housing is not affordable, explicitly include disabled students in the University’s Residential Strategy, and add housing advice to the Disabled Students’ Resource Hub and Welcome Guide. Working with the Estates Department and Accommodations, I also aim to increase accessibility options in halls to accommodate more kinds of disabilities.
Thank you so much, and vote Mia Nicole #1!