On the occasion of the European Day for Independent Living of People with Disabilities, this year we decided to take a virtual action – we invited our Facebook friends to put a picture of a black T-shirt labeled “The system kills them” on their profile picture. Our invitation was to all who agree that in Bulgaria social policy does not in any way improve the lives of people with disabilities, on the contrary – it leads them to think about euthanasia, to mothers dreaming to die after their children.
The idea for a black T-shirt with this inscription came from the refusal of the guard to allow a group of mothers of children with disabilities, as well as disabled people themselves, in Parliament’s building, as they accepted the T-shirts as a propaganda material. We took both as a joke and very seriously the idea of turning the shirts into agitation material and inviting friends, media representatives, public figures to support the disability reforms we are seeking for and to change the system that is killing us even literally.
We were supported on the air by Desi and Sasho from bTV’s Before Lunch
Zlatimir Yochev and Lora Indzhova from Bulgaria on air
Milen Tsvetkov from Milen Tsvetkov’s Hour
and Dimitar Patarinski of Channel 3
The T-shirt also wore Ivo Siromahov in the Slavi Show on May 4th
Journalist Iva Doychinova also put on a T-shirt in our support
Our appeal to friends and everyone who is not indifferent to our problems was:
THEIR SYSTEM KILLS THEM/US
the above may seem powerful and scary. Maybe, but it’s true! It’s not even a metaphor! It’s literally! The disability system in Bulgaria really kills children, kills adults. Slowly and undeserved. It chases out some to foreign countries, others are so frustrated that they begin to dream of a law about euthanasia for themselves and for their children. In Bulgaria, mothers of children with disabilities often dream of outliving their children because they see no hope.
But we will not give up! We are fighting. As much as we can and as we can. We fight for our lives! It is not easy at all, but we also have the desire for life. And in this struggle, we need support, to know that there are people who would stand behind us, beside us, among us and, at least for a day or two, for a month, would accept our cause as their own. And our cause is not that complicated and alien – we want to live! Decently, independently, happily. Together with you, to have the opportunity to be a part of the society. The way we are, as we are and as we can be. We have not deserved a different living with anything.
Support us by putting on our symbolic black T-shirt with the inscription “The system kills them” from the 5th of May – European Independent Living Day for disabled people, by the end of May.
Thank you, friends!