Michael McEwan    

Freelance Journalist 
                                Public Speaker   


This is me- Valuing the lives of people with disabilities

Posted by Michael Mcewan on December 22, 2022 at 6:40 PM Comments comments (0)


This is Me is a campaign that aims to increase public awareness of the experiences of people with learning disabilities.


It is a partnership of the Scottish Learning Disability Observatory (SLDO), the Scottish Commission for People with Learning Disabilities (SCLD), Down's Syndrome Scotland and Promoting a More Inclusive Society (PAMIS).


I spoke to Dr Deborah Kinnear at SLDO about the campaign.



New Routes Home

Posted by Michael Mcewan on July 24, 2022 at 4:45 PM Comments comments (0)



New Routes Home is a partnership of interested individuals and organisations across Scotland who campaign for the right of all people with disabilities to have their own home and to have meaningful choices around where they live, and who (if anyone) lives with them. This includes having choices around how support is organised and directed.


Michael McEwan speaks to Alastair Minty from In Control Scotland about the campaign.

We all have human rights

Posted by Michael Mcewan on July 24, 2022 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)


Scottish Learning Disability Week 2022 takes place from 2 until 8 May, and the theme for this year was ‘We all have human rights’.


I spoke to Libby Clement and Oonagh Brown from the Scottish Commission for People with Learning Disabilities (SCLD) about the theme, its importance and what's happening over the week.

Whats the learning from Covid 19

Posted by Michael Mcewan on March 7, 2022 at 7:10 PM Comments comments (0)


For disabled people, what has been the learning from the Covid-19 pandemic? And what now needs to happen to ensure better lives?


I spoke to Health Journalist and Broadcaster, Pennie Taylor about the history of care and support for people with disabilities, the impact of Covid-19 and how support and services can be improved.


I also spoke to Tracey Campbell, a parent whose daughter has Angelman syndrome, and Sanjeev Man, a Freelance Journalist and Disability Campaigner, to understand their experiences and get their views on what needs to change.

COP26 Climate Change and Disabled People

Posted by Michael Mcewan on March 7, 2022 at 7:05 PM Comments comments (0)


Cop 26, the global United Nations climate change conference took place this month in Glasgow.


What is the impact of the climate emergency on disabled people and how do they have their voices heard?


I spoke with Susie Fitton, Policy Officer at Inclusion Scotland about their involvement at Cop 26, the impacts of climate change on disabled people, the challenges, and what needs to happen to make sure disabled people are included as decision makers.

Human Rights Town

Posted by Michael Mcewan on March 7, 2022 at 6:55 PM Comments comments (0)



The  Scottish Commission for People with Learning Disabilities (SCLD) has launched an app, Human Rights Town, to help people with learning disabilities understand their human rights.  


The development of the app has been led by a group of people with learning disabilities who have been working with SCLD. It invites users to travel around a virtual ‘Human Rights Town’ where they encounter different scenarios at each location, such as using public transport or working at the supermarket. 


Michael McEwan speaks to Oonagh Brown, Human Rights Adviser at SCLD and Fiona Dawson, a member of the app development team.

Coronavirus and people with learning disabilities

Posted by Michael Mcewan on August 17, 2021 at 7:00 PM Comments comments (0)


The research project – Coronavirus and people with learning disabilities – is a UK wide study which has been exploring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on people with learning disabilities. In Scotland, the study is led by the University of Glasgow, with the support of the Scottish Commission for People with Learning Disabilities (SCLD).


I spoke to Research Associate, Roseann Maguire at the University of Glasgow and research participant, Sandy Stark, about the findings of the study.

Care Opinion

Posted by Michael Mcewan on August 17, 2021 at 7:00 PM Comments comments (0)


Care Opinion is a social enterprise which gives citizens a platform to air their views and opinions on health and care services. It aims to make care services better for everyone.


Fraser Gilmore, Head of Scotland at Care Opinion tells me more about its aims and how it works.

Stay Up Late

Posted by Michael Mcewan on August 17, 2021 at 6:55 PM Comments comments (0)


Going out to see bands, clubbing, or seeing friends is part of everyday life for lots of people. However, if you have a learning disability you may need support to do this.


Stay Up Late is a charity that supports people to make this happen. Keith Etherington and William Rae told me about the work of Stay Up Late and their plans for this year's Learning Disability Week.

Mecoco - meaningful community contribution

Posted by Michael Mcewan on April 15, 2021 at 7:30 PM Comments comments (0)


Mecoco (Meaningful Contribution in your Community) is a social enterprise based in North Ayrshire that supports people into employment.


The founder, Jenny Trott, believes that regardless of their level of ability, people can make a meaningful contribution and have the right to experience the workplace in their own community should they wish to.


​Mecoco specialises in making candles and soaps and adapts equipment, processes and even products to make the job as accessible as possible.


Here I chat with Jenny about the origins and work of the social enterprise.

Sport in Communities

Posted by Michael Mcewan on April 15, 2021 at 7:30 PM Comments comments (0)



With a wide network of partners and academic researchers from across Scotland and Europe, the Observatory for Sport in Scotland supports those delivering community sport and activity with independent research, knowledge sharing, and policy and practice guidance, as well as international benchmarking that brings confidence to widening sport participation to all ages and abilities.


Here I chat with David Ferguson, Executive Director of the Observatory about the work it does to support participation in sport across Scotland.

Sight Scotland Veterans

Posted by Michael Mcewan on April 15, 2021 at 7:15 PM Comments comments (0)


Sight Scotland Veterans has been around since 1915, and offers support across Scotland to veterans of the Armed Forces who need support to adapt to sight loss.

 Here I chatted with Alison Cairns, Practice Lead fo the outreach team, about the work of the organisation.


Posted by Michael Mcewan on November 22, 2020 at 5:25 PM Comments comments (0)


Neatebox provides smart solutions based on the challenges disabled people face every day.

 An example is an award-winning free app which allows people to use their mobile phone to push buttons at doors and pedestrian crossings safely and with more confidence.

 I spoke to Gavin Neate, the founder of the company about the products they provide.

Your Options Understood

Posted by Michael Mcewan on November 22, 2020 at 5:20 PM Comments comments (0)


Your Options Understood (Y.O.U) is an organisation that offers independent advice to those living with a disability, as well as parents and carers. It was set-up by Dr Danielle Farrel to share her own experiences of life with a disability and to show that having a disability does not necessarily mean that individuals cannot live an independent life.


I had a conversation with Danielle to find out more about the organisation.


Posted by Michael Mcewan on November 22, 2020 at 5:20 PM Comments comments (0)


Passion4Social is a web and graphic design agency which creates sustainable employment opportunities for people with disabilities, or long-term health conditions, which contribute to their feelings of inclusion, health, wellbeing, and quality of life.


I spoke to Thiago Carmo, Marketing Manager and Senior Designer, about the work of the agency.

Experiences of working on the frontline with a disability

Posted by Michael Mcewan on September 13, 2020 at 5:05 PM Comments comments (0)


What are the experiences of those with disabilities working on the frontline during Covid-19?


I interviewed Scott Kennedy, Lynn Murdoch and David Ross, who spoke about how they've continued to provide care and support, despite the challenging circumstances.

The impact of Covid-19 on disability sports

Posted by Michael Mcewan on September 13, 2020 at 5:00 PM Comments comments (0)


The 2020 Paralympic Games were due to be held in Tokyo this year over August and September, but have been rescheduled for 2021.

 How has this affected the organisations and athletes involved?

I got different perspectives from Gavin Macleod, Chief Executive of Scottish Disability Sport; and Stephen McGuire, an athlete for Boccia UK ,who was due to participate in this year's games.

Bill Scott: The impact of Covid-19 on disabled people

Posted by Michael Mcewan on September 13, 2020 at 4:50 PM Comments comments (0)


Bill Scott is Director of Policy at Inclusion Scotland, an organisation that works to achieve positive changes to policy and practice, so that disabled people are fully included throughout all Scottish society as equal citizens.

 I spoke to Bill about the results of their Covid-19 evidence survey, which reveals the impact of Covid-19 on disabled people.

Please note that this was recorded on 20 April 2020.

Experiences of unpaid carers during Covid-19

Posted by Michael Mcewan on June 22, 2020 at 6:30 PM Comments comments (0)



I spoke with three carers: Alex Davis, a full-time carer for her son; Frank McGowan who cares for his older brother; and Liz Carson, who cares for her son.


Each person tells us about their experiences of caring in lockdown.

Supporting people with a disability during Covid-19

Posted by Michael Mcewan on June 22, 2020 at 6:15 PM Comments comments (0)



Organisations that support people with disabilities and long-term conditions will have their own set of particular challenges during the Covid-19 crisis.


I spoke with three organisations – Scottish Personal Employers Network (SPAEN), Partners for Inclusion Group and Unity – about the services they provide, the challenges of the current situation and how they're supporting people.