This week is World Down's Syndrome Awareness Week. It's a time to celebrate those we know who have an extra copy of the 21st Chromosome. A time to celebrate diversity. To encourage inclusion. To dispel myths and to educate.
Despite all the good words of the act and policies the reality of life is so different. Reasonable adjustments are not being made and all too often people with disabilities are being seen as a cost burden.
I live in a part of London not well-served by accessible public transport. My commute would take over two hours each way and involve three buses, as no local tube stations are accessible. Trying to get on a bus as a wheelchair user in rush hour - especially when so many have unreliable ramps - is often an impossible task.
My life as an Olympic athlete never seems far away, I meet new people every day who, surprisingly, still have their exciting stories of 'where they were' in 2004, the moment I ran into the history books by winning two gold medals for Great Britain in the 800m and 1500m Athletics events. Or when I am travelling around the world hopefully motivating and inspiring individuals with my old anecdotes, reminiscing as I watch for the millionth time my "moment of glory". Until now...
Looking back, it strikes me as a little odd that we could openly discuss things like fertility and other physical issues which seemingly had priority. And yet we never really touched on another significant topic - mental health issues, and the impact they can have on people with physical disabilities.
Some parts of the media generally pounce on any opportunity to declaim ADHD as made up, or bad parenting, or a money-making invention of pharma companies. And every time a story like this breaks, it makes life for parents like me - parents of a child with ADHD - that little bit more difficult.
PR is the bedrock on which our government is built. It's right at the heart of the way it operates. We have never had a more media-savvy government or PR-aware leadership. So why did they think they could spin their way around the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) disability cuts? To understand why they truly believed that the great British people would swallow the proposed PIP cuts you need to go back in time. Quite a long way.
While our campaign has been to get Matthew into an autism-specific in-patient unit, we have realized that a bigger issue is a total breakdown of the provision of appropriate care in the community for our most vulnerable young people. The solution is not in fact more units, but rather providing proper social care at a local level.
I do believe in today's Britain more people are beginning to understand that those wanting to divide us are not only a tiny minority but more importantly, are not the same as the vast majority of British Muslims. If you want evidence of this, remind yourself of the uniquely British put down, 'you ain't no Muslim bruv'.
Today is World Water Day and this morning over 650million people around the world woke up with no clean water. That's one in ten people. Forced to drink, cook and wash with dirty water, people are at risk of getting sick and missing vital days of work and education, trapped in a cycle of poverty. Last month WaterAid invited me to travel to India with my 12-year-old daughter Glenys to see the situation for myself. I visited Sanabenakudi, a remote village in east India, to understand what everyday life is like for people living without access to safe water...
The aftermath of the Budget, has seen the opposition to disability benefit cuts pick up pace, with a growing consensus from all parties that the Chancellor shouldn't be asking those who can least afford it to make sacrifices.
If the Chancellor does nothing, or too little, he will be forever tainted as the worst kind of Tory - the kind that merely seeks to entrench advantage for the benefit of his own class. But if the Chancellor were to adopt this simple 10 point plan he could become the best kind of Tory - a new Peel or Disraeli. The choice is, almost entirely, his.
The current system for developing cancer drugs depends mostly on private investment from pharmaceutical companies and, as investors demand good returns on their investment, it's no surprise that what we've ended up with is very profitable drugs rather than very effective ones.
For years, disabled people had to rely on somebody else doing things for them. But now with the help of assistive technology, disabled people can do things that would have never been possible before - from switching on a light to having a voice to express themselves.
Charities have rightly been arguing against specific benefit cuts on behalf of their members and their beneficiaries; drawing evidence from disabled people, carers and also from their own professional staff; and making the case for excluding some of the most vulnerable and poorest members of society from further cuts to their limited income.
80million children had their education affected by conflicts and natural disasters in 2015. Girls are particularly disadvantaged being 2.5 times more likely to be out of school than boys in countries affected by conflict. Alas, the devastating news does not stop there: the situation is getting worse instead of better due to increasingly dangerous geopolitics around the globe. We need to act urgently to ensure that girls are protected and don't become the immediate casualties each time a new crisis unfolds.