Applause for Asda’s ‘invisible disabilities’ toilet sign

160806 Asda accessible toilet sign
As a person whose partner has so-called ‘invisible’ disabilities, This Writer can only applaud Asda’s decision to pilot these signs (above) in order to stop prejudice.

The Metro report states that the sign was spotted in a York store and, while the company has been contacted about rolling them out across the UK, it hasn’t yet responded.

Let’s hope that the signs become a familiar sight soon – and that other firms follow suit.

There are many conditions that class as ‘invisible disabilities’. This means while a person may seem physically able, they are fighting their own disability on the inside.

Because of this, there is a need for them to use a disabled toilet.

This might be for extra room and a more sanitary area to place treatment that needs to be applied or maybe, if they’re only able to travel short distances and need extra help sitting up and down, help can be offered.

There are many reasons as to why someone with an invisible disability needs to use the disabled loo – and they shouldn’t be made to feel victimised because of it.

To stop the stares, the mutters under the breath and even the confrontation that comes with someone who looks ‘physically-abled’ using the disabled toilets, Asda has stepped up by changing their disabled toilet signs.

A picture of the sign, which reads: ‘Not every disability is visible’, was posted to Crohn’s and Colitis UK’s Facebook page, and it has so far received 9,300 likes.

Many people have commented to express their happiness after seeing the sign.

One person said: ‘Finally some recognition for those hidden disabilities, Crohn’s has been my nemesis for years yet I always feel judged for using disabled facilities. Well done Asda.’

Another added: ‘That’s a great sign. I’ve heard the grumbling public whispering loudly how I shouldn’t be using a disabled toilet. Well done Asda.’

Source: Asda displays new disabled toilet sign to show that ‘not every disability is visible’


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7 thoughts on “Applause for Asda’s ‘invisible disabilities’ toilet sign

  1. summertime75

    Well done Asda, with the reduction of public toilets it’s often very difficult for people who can’t access a standard toilet and are made to feel as if they shouldn’t or don’t have a right to use the disabled toilet.

  2. Di ane

    I applaud Asda too: my late neighbour had heart trouble and was also on kidney dialysis, one day when coming out of a disabled toilet someone very nastily said: ‘You’re NOT disabled’.
    “NOT DISABLED HE ROARED!!!” He immediately lifted his shirt showing them his ‘in and out’ tubes for his dialysis and huge scar from his heart surgery. The person never apologised as he bid a hasty retreat!

  3. Dan

    I spotted the same sign in the Asda store at Brynmawr in south Wales this week, so maybe they are going countrywide. It’s a good idea.

  4. katythenightowl

    Now this really does make me happy 🙂
    My disabilities have become ever more visible with time but I, too, used to suffer because, due to my, then, invisible illnessess, people would point, look angry, or whisper, when I used the disabled toilets!
    Well done Asda 🙂

  5. John

    I’ve sort of being saying something similar to this, for a very long time. I think that a lot of people ‘see’ someone as being disabled, if they’re in a wheelchair. That’s THEIR idea of a ‘disabled’ person.
    I guess in a lot of ways, it all boils down to YOUR definition of a disability.
    Though this might be stretching it a bit, it could be argued that nearly ALL of us have a ‘disability’ in one form or another, from something that’s been caused through biological defect to something that’s been caused through the natural process of aging.

    Of course, perhaps things haven’t been helped by the fact that the ‘disabled’ symbol shows someone IN a wheelchair?

    Maybe we should change the symbol that is used to represent someone who IS disabled? But how?
    People’s prejudices? need to be altered, and this might just be a good start.

    1. summertime75

      People’s perception of disability has nearly always been dependant on the visibility of the disability, I used to be a learning disability nurse and people were usually more understanding if the individuals disability was apparent such as Down’s Syndrome or a physical disability and their behaviour became “difficult” however if the person looked “normal” then we were more likely asked to leave a pub or people would ‘tut” or worse make the often used comment that “they shouldn’t be allowed in public,” unfortunately a recent incident in a Brighton pub shows that we still have a long way to go to accept people with disabilities.

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