Skip to navigation | Skip to main content | Skip to footer
Search the University of Manchester siteSearch Menu StaffNet

Join colleagues in marking International Day of Persons with Disabilities

29 Nov 2021

The annual day aims to promote the rights and wellbeing of persons with disabilities, as well as increase awareness of disability issues

Purple Light Up

This year the International Day of Persons with Disabilities is on Friday, 3 December.

Our University has a diverse workforce of over 11,000, and approximately 11% of those have identified themselves as disabled people via staff records. We also currently welcome over 7,561 disabled students as part of our community.

We are celebrating the contribution made by people with disabilities, to the life of our University and the wider community, by lighting up the Academy One building on Oxford Road in purple.   The colour purple is widely acknowledged to be associated with campaigns related to disability and 3 December is recognised as Purple Light Up Day, organised by PurpleSpace of which our University is a proud member. We would like to thank colleagues from our Directorate of Estates and Eacilities team, who have worked with us to mark this special day.

Our University has an active Disability Staff Network (DSN) who, alongside our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team and the Disability Advisory and Support Service (DASS) are working to ensure that all our colleagues and students with a disability feel safe, are able to be themselves, and make an influential contribution to our University community whether they are working on campus or in their own homes. 

In addition to our ongoing work through our membership of the Business Disability Forum and Purple Space, the DSN is excited to announce that the Hidden Disability Sunflower Lanyard scheme will be rolled out across our campus making it easier for those living with a hidden disability to feel confident about asking for assistance when working or studying.  Lanyards will be available in University outlets and staff will receive training on how to interact with someone who needs assistance.

Professor Alys Young, Academic Lead for Disability Equality, says: “Disabled people are a vital and influential part of our University community whether as students, members of staff or visitors. 

"We are proud to celebrate the International Day of Persons with Disabilities as an opportunity to recognise the many ways in which the full diversity of what it is to be human are exemplified by our colleagues and friends.”