Abuse problem getting worse

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Regarding the recent survey on hate crime, I noticed that the list of participating groups didn’t include one of disabled adults.

I think that if it had the results would have been more shocking.

During my years of being disabled I’ve often experienced verbal abuse by children and adults, had stones thrown at me, had bikes ridden at me, and supermarket trolleys pushed at me.

All of these things happened in broad daylight.

I had done nothing to provoke them besides being obviously vulnerable.

I have reported some things to the police and they were very good.

But the great majority of things have been done by strangers. There is little they can do.

My disabled friends suffer similar problems.

I know the abuse suffered by the gay and ethnic communities is awful, but at least fit people can defend themselves. We can’t.

As far as I know there is no specific support group for us in Hartlepool.

These incidents happen out of the blue, any time.

I think maybe the authorities need to look at our group more closely and educate children in schools, using peer pressure to help stamp it out.

At the moment it is just getting worse.

Saying that, there are good people in the town who do intervene. I’d like to thank them. Their kindness is appreciated.

I hope something positive comes from this letter.

Name and address supplied