Press Release

Understanding the impact of Disability Microaggressions

RPS have created a Disability Microaggression Reference with volunteers from the Action in Belonging Culture and Diversity (ABCD) group as part of its Inclusion and Diversity workstream.

Disability related microaggressions are a form of discrimination and ableism.

Ableism is discrimination and social prejudice against people who have disabilities or who are perceived to have disabilities. It can take the form of ideas and assumptions, stereotypes, attitudes and practices, physical barriers in the environment or larger scale oppression.

The Disability Microaggression Reference not only raises awareness about disability in the pharmacy profession, but challenges the stigma surrounding it. It includes examples of verbal microaggressions and behaviours to look out for and to avoid, as well as how to create a more positive culture and to be more disability inclusive.

Some of the volunteers from the ABCD group include Margaret Stone, Alison Astles, Adam Ahmir, Aamer Safdar, Minna Eii, Charlotte Bell, Osayuki Igbinoba and Samael Goode; all of whom help to formulate the reference from their personal experiences of living with a disability or being a carer for someone with a disability. The next ABCD meeting will take place on September 2.

Charlotte Bell said: “As a pharmacist who has experienced discrimination due to my neurodivergence, this document and the work around it will help our profession to strive to be better.

“We need to improve behaviours and working conditions for everyone working in pharmacy and also to understand the impact of disabilities on our patients.”

Osayuki Igbinoba said: “The disability microaggression document is important because it challenges the stigma surrounding disability and raises awareness about disability. Disability is overlooked in the pharmacy profession and this needs to change.”

Samael Goode added: "The first step towards positive change is making other people aware that something must change. If you have never experienced these situations, how would you know that they were occurring at all or how they make people feel? Communication is at the core of our profession, avoid accidentally hurting members of your team with yours."

There will also be a workshop with multi-award-winning disability specialist and speaker Shani Dhanda tonight, August 24 at 7pm, exploring what disability microaggressions are, and what they can look and sound like. A recording will be available to view afterwards if you’re unable to attend. 

Read the full Disability Microaggression Reference here and sign up for tonight’s workshop via this link. Registration is open until 7pm.

Our ABCD group volunteers will add new sections to the resource throughout the year, highlighting microaggressions based on age, gender and sexual orientation. Want to help? Join our ABCD group.