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What are direct discrimination and indirect discrimination?

Discrimination might be direct or indirect. Direct discrimination is when a person is treated badly (and differently to other people) just because they have a disability. Indirect discrimination is when there is the same rule for everyone, but it effects a person with a disability badly (and differently) than people without their disability.

Direct discrimination is when somebody with a disability is not given the same chances as a person without a disability. For example, Anna’s disability means she needs help getting dressed. Her youth group swimming team goes on a training camp. Anna’s coach tells her that she can’t come, because she needs help dressing herself. This is direct discrimination.

Indirect discrimination is when rules and procedures (usual ways of doing things) or physical barriers (like steps) stop a person with a disability from having the same opportunities as people without disabilities. These might be rules that are the same for everyone, but they have a much worse effect for a person with a disability. For example, Simon’s disability means that he wears a seizure helmet for safety. His cricket club has a rule that all players must wear the team hat when playing. The hat doesn’t fit over his seizure helmet. So Simon is told that he can’t play. This is indirect discrimination.

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