Many people have varying perceptions about disability.
Blackburn Rovers is an inclusive integrated club.
We do not segregate specific groups or have separate services for fans who need additional support if they have a disability.
All fans receive the same level of service to enable them to access the stadium and facilities.
This includes fans/customers who may have a disability which is not always apparent.
Our staff receive training prior to the start of each season and are reminded that we do not judge or make assumptions.
Our job is to establish the help that is required to enable someone to come to a match independently where possible and ensure facilities and assistance is in place where it is not.
People come to football matches because they are football fans. People come to Ewood Park because it has good access.
Each year, members of the club’s Part of the Crowd Group and the club’s Disability Officer undertake an audit of the stadium to establish where facilities can be improved – this year it focused on signage.
Any identified improvements are discussed with the Operations Works Manager, whose department takes forward any work that is required which relates to the stadium and premises – this ensures our pledge of continuous improvement is carried out.
In support of Rovers' integrated approach, our facilities are described as being accessible rather than disabled, because access is what fans require.
On Saturday, fans in the stadium may have noticed new signage on the accessible toilet doors which reminds us all that the cubicles are accessible to those who need to use them - the person may not always have a wheelchair.
The initiative was welcomed by former Rovers midfielder Lenny Johnrose, who agrees it is important not to make assumptions about people.
Other recent improvements include the new integrated ramp to the raised area in Blues.
Current services include a period of quiet time in the Game Room and Sensory Room for fans who have autism, and signs and picture cards for fans who need help with communication – this can include people who have learning disabilities, autism, dementia or who are deaf.
We provide ongoing support to many disability-related groups in the community, including Sliding Doors’ weekly Thursday night get-together in Blues and the monthly Memories and Comrades group which meets on the last Friday of each month in Blues.
This group is for people who have a connection with the military and dementia. For further details of either group please contact Linda on 01254 508246.