We believe that through increasing visibility, creating a community, information/resource sharing and events we will equip and empower individuals with limb differences to challenge perceptions of ability and overcome obstacles.
Knowledge is power.
Through understanding the various conditions that result in limb differences we can support effective advocacy for the community. We are currently developing this section of the site to include the 50 conditions that result in Dysmelia.
With Limb differences being under represented in society, hearing from others who have limb differences is imperative. The IAP Blog is full of stories and educational pieces from a variety of authors who advocate for the limb different community.
We have a growing team of ambassadors who are passionate about supporting the limb different community and their families on this journey. They all have very strong voices on social media and advocate passionately for inclusion whilst sharing their limb difference journeys.
Above you can see that the release of the newest adaptation of Roald Dahl's 'The Witches' has caused huge uproar within the limb different community sparking #notawitch to trend on Instagram.
unfortunately this is a very difficult situation for the community. who are facing the reality that
in 2020 WarnerBros’ have decided to use ectrodactyly (a condition that 1 of 90,000 children are born with) to further the narrative that limb differences/disabilities/differences are something to be scared of. This is a characteristic added by the producers of the @witchesmovie which is not in the original novel or movie.
There are many communities and charities that work tirelessly to try and raise awareness, tackle ableism and change the narrative around differences. With over 1 million amputations per year, 8 in 10,000 children born with a limb difference per year and disabled people being the largest minority group world wide is it inexcusable to imply that such characteristics are fit for a 'witch'? Furthermore the movie pushes the idea that this condition should be hidden with gloves when out in public.
The implications of this choice on a individual level are undeniable. Children born with this condition and other limb differences now have to face their peers after watching #thewitchesmovie and this may result in some difficult questions and emotions. On a wider level this will reinforce a very old narrative that to be different/disabled is to be scary/monstrous and therefore dehumanising them.
We, the IAMPOSSIBLE community, believe that the spirit of Roald Dahl has not been honoured here. His books were intended to bring light and love into children's worlds. Instead this ill informed choice will bring many difficult feelings and situations to the surface for those born different.
The level of advocacy and noise that has been made over the last 24 hours has been breath-taking. We have taken this opportunity to start discussions around difference, ableism and self acceptance.
We need to ensure that society listens to the issues that this has raised and educate parents who choose to let their children watch this movie to start discussions around difference. That to be different is not scary or monstrous and conditions such as ectrodactyly along with the 49 others that result in limb differences are natural and not to be used to make fictional characters scary.
We need to support those who's confidence is impacted by this depiction. While we are trying to set up a platform to enable peer to peer support please contact us directly and we will put you in contact with an individual who may be able to help with any difficulties raised by this situation.
Lets take the true spirit of Roald Dahl who wrote ‘Somewhere inside all of us is the power to change the world.’ The communities voice is being head so now lets get louder.
As for Warner Bros' they need to acknowledge that ‘Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.’ We hope they will comment shortly and support the organisations that will be rebuilding and supporting the limb difference community whilst trying to snuff out a narrative they have brought back from the dark ages.
Together This Is Possible
Below are some articles on this topic - please take the time to read;
What a Witch! - Written by our Ambassador Shannon
If you have been impacted by the release of 'The Witches' and would like some support or information please contact us and we will do our utmost to support you.