Professor, Faculty of Social Sciences
Now I have the lived experience of being disabled, it helps me connect with people, from carers to disabled students.
Sharing the stage with Kirstein at the graduation ceremony was the person she credits with being integral in changing the system: Dr Sally Witcher OBE, disability campaigner and former chair of the Scottish Commission on Social Security. On Kirstein’s recommendation, Dr Witcher received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Stirling for her work as a campaigner on disability and inclusion.
“Sally has been integral to making my life easier, thanks to her role in replacing PIP with ADP, and in improving the process for applying for the payments, from the interviews that are carried out to the forms that are filled in. I haven’t changed, but the system has: it’s much better and fairer and that’s down to Sally’s work. I’m hugely grateful and wanted to show that with this nomination,” says Kirstein.
Kirstein has just been awarded an ADP and with the payment has been able to purchase a mobility scooter – a purple one she has christened Penelope. “I plan to be able to get out more with my family, and not just be sat on a bench somewhere while they walk around and enjoy the scenery,” she says.
She will shortly introduce Penelope to the University of Stirling campus in her latest step in a journey to educate, both her students and her colleagues, about disability.
Dr Sally Witcher, who received an Honorary doctorate at the University of Stirling in March.