Premier League Team, Stoke City FC, joins campaign against discrimination of ‘invisible’ illnesses

03 March, 2017

The Colostomy Association is delighted to announce that Stoke City FC, the second oldest professional football club in the world, have joined our Stoma Friendly Society campaign.

Stoke City’s home ground, the bet365 stadium with a capacity of 27,902, will now display ‘Not all disabilities are visible’#stomafriendly stickers on all of the toilet facilities across the stadium. Stoke City is the first Premier League football club to join the campaign.

Individuals with a stoma have had their bowel diverted through their abdomen so that bodily waste can pass into a stoma bag. This may be due to illnesses such as cancer, Crohn’s disease or following trauma to the abdomen. Almost one in every 500 people in the UK are affected and have additional needs when using the toilet. Because the condition is ‘invisible’, they often face discrimination when using an accessible toilet. In a recent Colostomy UK survey more than 30 per cent of respondents stated that they had experienced problems of this nature.

The Colostomy Association is currently campaigning to create a ‘stoma-friendly society’. This includes encouraging organisations across the UK to display suitable signage on accessible toilets to reduce discrimination and to improve toilet facilities for people who have a stoma.

Monty Taylor, Colostomy Association Chairman said: “We are delighted that Stoke City FC is leading the way in the Premier League in the fight against discrimination of people with ‘invisible’ health conditions or illnesses. These supporters should be able to go to a football game safe in the knowledge that they will not be abused for using an accessible toilet. Having a Premier League Football team join our campaign is excellent news.”

Anthony Emmerson at Stoke City FC said: “We are committed to ensuring the bet365 stadium is accessible to everyone and we want to ensure that all supporters regardless of their needs can enjoy a day out here. We hope that these stickers will make a real difference to our visitors if they have a stoma bag or any other ‘invisible condition.”

Any organisation wishing to find out more about stoma friendly toilets or ‘not all disabilities are visible’ stickers can visit our campaign page or call us on 0118 939 1537

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