Election win will offer real boost to disabled youngsters

There are hopes that the election of a Parliamentary candidate with cerebral palsy will offer inspiration for those children and teenagers living with the same condition.

Jared O’Mara won one of the most surprising victories of election night when he ousted former Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg in Sheffield Hallam.

The 35-year-old, who has been a long-standing disability campaigner, edged ex-Deputy Prime Minister Mr Clegg by a little over 2,000 votes. The victory was a surprise for the local man, who is rumoured to have made a last-minute visit to the supermarket to buy a suit when it became apparent that an electoral upset was on the cards.

As well as chairing the city’s disability information service, he also spent 12 years working as a trustee for a local disability charity and has served as a school governor.

Jared recently wrote a blog post for the charity Scope about the nature of campaigning.

“Being disabled and standing for election has not been easy,” he wrote. “I was born with cerebral palsy hemiparesis, which in my case means that the entire right side of my body is significantly weaker than my left.

“I have reduced mobility, poor balance, and regular bouts of tiredness and fatigue. I can also only type with my left index finger.

“Even before becoming a candidate, I’ve had to struggle up and down difficult stairs just to get to candidacy interviews. When out in residential areas, I’m constantly on edge, wary that a dog may jump up at me and knock me over.

“All the extra campaign on work on top of working full is time is more tiring for me than it would be for a non-disabled person. But I relish it.

At EnViva Paediatric Care, our experienced staff can provide complex nurse-managed homecare for babies, children and young people with a range of disabling conditions including cerebral palsy. For more information about the services we provide, please contact us today.