King's Professor invited as keynote speaker at L'Arche's London Gala
March 3, 2016
By Nicole Bullock, Communications & Media Relations
King’s Disability Studies program founder and professor, Dr. Pamela Cushing, was the keynote speaker at the 2016 annual L’Arche London Gala on Friday, February 26th at the DoubleTree by Hilton. With the support of King’s faculty, staff, and students, Dr. Cushing spoke to a sold-out crowd of 600 people from a cross–section of the London community.
Dr. Cushing’s focus was on the importance of celebrating L'Arche London's opening of a new community centre that welcomes a growing number of people each and every day. She emphasized, "more work is needed to achieve inclusion, but it is heartening to take stock of things that have changed since L'Arche and Community Living began 50 years ago.” Dr. Cushing recognized that the positive changes that are seen today stem from developments in the field rooted in what she called a "push strategy" – which is the attempt to push people into community spaces - to catalyze a disabled presence through anti-discrimination work involving rights and legislation, policy shifts, improving accessibility, all in which ideally would be supported by adequate funding
The King’s Disability Studies (DS) program creates space for rethinking the traditional, medical approaches to imagining disability, mental health and related social institutions. The program focuses on using everyday life cases, and the first-person voice of disabled people to unsettle common misperceptions about life with disability. Instead of assuming it is the impairment that needs ‘fixing’, the program explores various creative ways that the social, policy and built environments can be adapted to be more inclusive.
For more information on Disabilities Studies at King’s, visit: