I had the incredible honour of speaking at the INAS Global Games 2019 Sports Summit.
Speakers included Paralympic Games President Andrew Parsons, Sport Australia CEO Kate Palmer, Australian Paralympic Team CEO Lynne Anderson, Steve Frost of Frost Inc and Jonathon Welch of Choir of Hard Knocks with inclusion the theme of all speakers. Well done Sport Inclusion Australia for hosting this event.
I spoke about the need for 'real' inclusion, and going beyond policies or implementation of programs, rather it has been a shift in culture and attitudes.
I shared my own experiences as Founder of Sport Access Foundation, as one with a disability and working in corporate roles for over 15 years and more recently my experience as a high performance athlete. I highlighted that my experiences within the high performance arena still are finding their way to true inclusion between the para and able bodied athletes. These differences are subtle in the way 'para' athletes are described or how decisions are made for them compared to their elite peers. I also recognised the outstanding developments of para sport, in triathlon and other sport, but we still have a way to go in embedding inclusion as intrinsically linked with all the decisions, rather than decisions around inclusions being for example the sake of ticking a box. I also spoke about my belief that we move away from the language of para and able bodied athlete. We are all athletes.
I would encourage individuals and organisations to read Steve Frost's book - The Inclusion Imperative and this gives you practical insight into how inclusion really does work, and brings enormous benefit socially and economically.