The national disability charity, United Response, has published an easy read summary of the political parties’ manifestos today. Using simple words and explanatory images, the publication aims to make the main election pledges made by the parties accessible to the 1.5 million adults in the UK with learning disabilities in just one 18-page document.

The summary has been published as a special edition of Easy News, a free accessible news magazine launched by United Response in 2013 to make news easier to understand for people with learning disabilities. The magazine is produced by UR Consultants, a group of people with learning disabilities, employed by United Response to translate news stories into an easy read format.

A bi-monthly magazine, Easy News was created to make current affairs and political debate more accessible, and so make it easier for people with learning disabilities to follow developments and form and express their opinions on topical issues.

United Response political correspondent David Allkins, who has Asperger’s syndrome and communication difficulties, welcomed the translation of the manifesto into easy read.

He said: “I urge everyone to read this accessible information to make an informed choice on election day. Most of all, I urge everybody everywhere whichever party they support, to exercise their democratic right and vote on 7th May.”

The manifesto special is a round-up of the key points made by the 7 main political parties, providing details of their promises around health, education, immigration and more. This special edition is available as a downloadable PDF and can be used in group work to help those supporting people with disabilities to begin discussions on voting and help people to come to a decision on who they will vote for at the General Election on 7th May.

Diane Lightfoot, Director of Communications at United Response, said: “We hope that the manifesto special will empower people with learning disabilities, and anyone else who wants to, to find out more about the policies of all the main parties so that they can cast an informed vote on election day.

“We believe that people with learning disabilities should have access to the same information as the rest of society. We hope that the easy read format, translated by our own team of consultants with learning disabilities, will encourage people to find out more about the manifestos and exercise their democratic right to vote."

The manifesto edition also supports Every Vote Counts, a major campaign by United Response designed to make politics accessible to all, particularly people with learning disabilities. It has provided a set of easy read resources to make the democratic process clearer, and the charity has urged all political parties to communicate more accessibly. The campaign has received endorsement from across the political spectrum.

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Download the Easy News special on manifestos
Find out more about Easy News

To find out more about United Response's Every Vote Counts campaign, and how to make voting more accessible for people with learning disabilities, visit www.everyvotecounts.org.uk

Watch David’s endorsement of the easy read manifesto round-up in full: