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A woman phoned us, having googled “disability and homeless”. She knows a woman who is homeless, and in a wheelchair. How can she get this woman housed, she asked.

We told her that there are several problems that are relevant. The first is that there is an (invalid) assumption that people can and will help themselves if told how to. Unseen disabilities often preclude this. This makes it necessary for you (or us at Good4you) to take the disabled woman by the hand and lead her through the housing process, right to the end. Do it for her, instead of telling her how to do it herself. Secondly, that right people to approach, in this case, are the housing office at Tower Hamlets Borough Council. Specifically mention the words: Disabled, “priority need” and vulnerable, since these are part of the jargon that will get the person housed very fast. Above all, contact Good4you again if you need more help.
The picture above is not a picture of the person referred to in the letter, but a photo of a regular and well known Big Issue Vendor at Wimbledon Station. It is another example of the extremities of social exclusion that affect disabled people. 

Big Issue Vendors have no annual leave, no maternity leave, no sick leave, no PAYE, no employer's liability insurance, no UIF, no protection from the Minimum Wage Act, no allowance or adjustment for disability at work, and no union. Surely disabled people deserve more than this?