HELPING FELLOW VILLA FANS
There are some Aston Villa fans that can`t attend games at Villa Park, because the stadium doesn`t have the facilities to cater for them.
While Villa don`t currently have the required number of disabled supporters places and disabled fans still can`t buy tickets online, there is also the problem of not having a Changing Place on match days.
A facility that other clubs such as our neighbours West Bromwich Albion, have for their supporters.
A Changing Place is a larger toilet area with a height adjustable changing bench, a hoist, a shower, a toilet and a sink. Over 1/4 of a million people in the UK cannot use standard accessible toilets. This includes people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people.
It would allow disabled supporters to use the toilet in safety and comfort, and make life easier for their carers too on match days.
The Aston Villa Disabled Supporters Association (AVDSA) was set up in July of this year to help lobby the club to improve the conditions for many Villa supporters.
As a disabled person myself and also the Aston Villa Disabled Supporters Association club secretary, I have received a lot of emails and correspondence from fans and realise the importance and the benefit a Changing Place could bring to supporters who go to games and those who currently cannot.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
The first action of the AVDSA is to campaign with your help to bring Aston Villa up to the standard of other clubs.
Signing this petition (https://www.change.org/p/aston-villa-sign-to-have-a-changing-place-installed-into-villa-park-for-disabled-fans) is the first step to show the club the support for the installation of a Changing Place, something that you`d think a club the size of Aston Villa would already have.
Never mind Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal, Villa are now behind the likes of WBA, Leicester, Southampton, Watford and Sunderland, who have all already taken the steps to be more inclusive to their supporters.
If/when Villa get promoted they will have to fall in line with Accessible Stadia Guidance in providing a certain number of disabled places, which they are currently below and also provide a Changing Place.
Unlike a lot of plans, I feel that a Changing Place should be installed sooner rather than hinge on promotion to the Premier League, as the cost wouldn`t be that great to the club.
SPREAD THE WORD
Please do sign the petition to show your support as a Villa fan and also please do share it on social media.
It will also help get the word out of the Aston Villa Disabled Supporters Association to other Villa disabled supporters, so we can help them feel a more welcome part of the Villa family.
If you come to the fun zone at Villa`s home matches you can talk to myself about joining and also helping the AVDSA.
If anybody wants to make a donation to the AVDSA, that will also be very helpful.
You can contact and follow us on the following social media channels:
Twitter – https://twitter.com/astonvillaDSA
Facebook Group – https://www.facebook.com/groups/348453494938/
Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/astonvilladsa
WBA accessibility concourse improvements – https://www.wba.co.uk/news/2017/august/accessible-concourse/
Premier League Changing Places – http://www.changing-places.org/news/premier_league_changing_places.aspx
Changing Places – http://www.changing-places.org/
This petition will be delivered to: Aston Villa Football Club