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The Social Model of Disability

All of the work of Thurrock Coalition is underpinned by the Social Model of Disability
•    Theories of disability can be useful in bringing about changes to attitudes held by society.
•    By viewing disabled people as equal.
By viewing disabled people as individuals
•    The social model of disability is a useful way of understanding disability. It was developed by disabled people,
It states that disabled people are disadvantaged by social and economic barriers in society.
It is the way society is organised that excludes disabled people from being involved and taking part.
•    Thurrock Coalition works to raise awareness of peoples rights, responsibilities, duties and entitlements and to remove physical, environmental and attitudinal barriers that disable people.

What We Do

The work profile of Thurrock Coalition is wide ranging. We consult with people who use Local Authority Services, such as Adult Social Care and Housing. We talk to people about their lived experiences on thematic issues through events, peer to peer surveys, Partnership Board Meetings, advice and information and advocacy provision. We collate the information and make recommendations for service improvement via co-production, co-operation and communication with the Local Authority.

Here are a few of examples of the types of issues and themes that we have highlighted over the past couple of years (more information and detail is available from our Reports page: 

A Sensory Confrontation to raise awareness of the need for greater service provision and a council Sensory Strategy for people with sensory impairments. The event was followed by a series of workshops aimed at informing the Sensory Strategy.

Thurrock Coalition recently ran a number of workshops consulting with young people in transition in order to inform the Thurrock Council Transition Strategy. The results, findings and recommendations are currently being collated.

A "Powerful Partnerships" event, looked into the importance of co-operation, co-ordination and collaboration between Adult Social Care, Health, LINk and the Partnership Boards that operate in Thurrock to highlight and discuss future plans. Thurrock Coalition has designed and developed a "Partnership Board Charter" to help to build capacity and consistency between the respective Partnership Boards.

Thurrock Coalition has also provided input, feedback and views on the Carers Strategy and Specification.
Ian Evans, our Programme Co-ordinator is involved with the drafting, creation and delivery of a Masters Level University of Essex course on Personalisation, Advocacy, Rights and Entitlements in a disabling society.
We have set up and delivered a series of Focus Groups, engaging and consulting the people of Thurrock on their experiences and aspirations for the training and development of the Adult Social Care Workforce - known as Workforce Planning. The groups were delivered using solution focused standard setting and the final report, conclusions, and recommended standards was submitted to Thurrock Council to inform the writing of the Workforce Strategy. The draft strategy is now ready and Thurrock Coalition has arranged to re-convene the focus groups for review and feedback.
We have also been working to shape the Advocacy Strategy for Thurrock by way of a Peer to Peer Questionnaire on Advocacy Services in the Borough that was completed by almost 80 disabled people in the borough. The results of the questionnaire (run through Thurrock Diversity Network) we're passed on to the Commissioning Manager to integrate into the strategy. We have received the draft and will provide input as required.
We are involved in responding both nationally and locally to the government's Disability Strategy and the Welfare Reform agenda, the Care Act 2014 and the impact of the closure of the Independent Living Fund and how it will affect disabled people, older people, their families and carers. The Programme Co-ordinator has submitted position papers to both Local and National government on the issue.
Thurrock Coalition also runs an independent Consultation Group called Voices For Choices. The group is for anyone who has experience of using Adult Social Care. The group has a dialogue with Heads of Service, Service Managers and Social Work Staff at Thurrock Council in order to bring about positive change and service improvement for disabled people.
Thurrock Coalition is also a primary contact for 3rd Party Hate Crime Reporting and referrals in the Borough and we are happy to talk in confidence to anyone who has experienced Disability Hate Crime and to discuss the options available to them. We are an accredited "Hate Incident Reporting Centre" (HIRC) and we have 4 members of staff in the office who are trained "Hate Crime Ambassadors" (HCAs).


The Essex Police Strategic Hate Crime Prevention Partnership (SHCPP) is establishing a network of accredited Hate Incident Reporting Centre (HIRC)/ Hate Crime Ambassadors  across Essex to create more opportunities to ‘Report It to Sort It’

What is hate crime?
Hate crimes or prejudice-based incidents are defined as any incident, which may constitute a criminal offence, which is perceived by the victim or any other person as being motivated by prejudice or hostility towards a personal characteristic.

Thurrock Coalition is part of this network of community based Hate Incident Reporting Centres (HIRCs) and we are able to provide advice, support and reporting facilities.

What is a HIRC? - Hate Incident Reporting Centres, or HIRC’s, are community venues where individuals can report hate incidents and hate crimes, either as a victim or a witness. A HIRC can act as an alternative place for reporting hate crimes/hate incidents rather than directly to the police.

A HIRC works in collaboration with Essex Police and other partner agencies to provide support and information during the reporting process.

More information is available from the Stop The Hate Website here


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