Our Current Focus until 2024
FIND OUR VISION, MISSION AND VALUES HERE.
This strategy is being launched as part of International Face Equality Week (IFEW) 2022, the theme being:
‘Face Equality is a Human Right’
Discrimination and indignities are a daily occurrence for the facial difference community. This is a hidden community that has continued to be marginalised, abused and neglected, throughout history. To this day we do not believe the injustice experienced by this unique community has been adequately recognised or addressed by global society.
READ THIS REPORT WHICH SUMMARISES THIS STRATEGIC FOCUS.
Legal recognition of disfigurement is limited to disability laws. Our research indicates that existing disability-specific laws are failing the facial and visible difference community on several levels, largely due to facial differences not being universally regarded as a disability and because the barriers experienced by someone with a facial difference are often attitudinal rather than physical.
This is why we as an Alliance are repositioning facial difference, both legally and socially, in an effort to validate the unique experiences of this particular community. Some living with a facial difference will also qualify and identify as disabled, along with any other marginalised characteristic. We believe all of these aspects are worthy of independent recognition and protections that recognise the unique prejudices experienced by individual and intersecting identities.
It is our long-term ambition to create a space for facial difference to be recognised as an independent equality and human rights issue, because the root of the discrimination, abuse and stigma experienced by the global facial difference community must be effectively addressed.
However, until this has been achieved, we must utilise, strengthen, and raise awareness of any existing laws that might offer protection, and so we will continue to ensure people with facial differences are aware of existing laws that may be disability-related.
For this reason, we are launching a series of legal fact-sheets as part of IFEW 2022, to help people with facial difference to know their rights. It is our aim to break down and explain in understandable terms, the equality laws of the UK, USA, Europe and also the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Face equality, impossible? I think not. Liberating? Doable? Essential? I think so. None of us, on our own, can make this happen – but together we can.
James Partridge, Founder of FEI
Over the next four years we will focus on:
- Landing the message that face equality is a social justice issue, deserving of recognition, fairness and space alongside other equality and human rights issues such as race, gender identity and disability.
- Influencing policy and practice to ensure the safety, inclusion and recognition of the facial difference community in business, education, government, media, digital and beyond.
- Enabling our members to campaign in their own settings to reduce discrimination, indignity, and for better legal recognition and protection whilst highlighting good practice and positive growth.
- Connecting our global members who are working directly with the facial difference community providing vital care be it through surgical and medical care or psycho-social and mental health support. Together we will create a world where the barriers to equity, wellbeing and dignity are erased.
- Gathering research into the extent of stigma and injustice experienced by people with facial differences around the world.
- Working with our members to build and disseminate programmes to reduce stigma, indignity and discrimination.
- Growing our community of individuals and member organisations, ensuring that everyone has the tools they need to make face equality a reality.
- Normalising and reducing stigma around facial difference by ensuring the global facial difference community is seen and heard.
- Educating through our growing education hub which aims to champion respect and understanding for people with facial differences across all aspects of life.
Find out more about our current projects here.