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Disabled in Switzerland: sometimes tough, sometimes comic

Access to jobs, education, or even a good night out can be difficult for the disabled in Switzerland. Comedian Eddie, who has cerebral palsy, explains more.

This content was published on August 20, 2019 - 08:37
SRF/swissinfo.ch

Being in a wheelchair isn’t all bad, says the Zurich man, who was born with cerebral palsy.

When he’s on a night out and picking his way through a crowded nightclub, the speed with which people jump apologetically out of his way is a big plus for clearing a path; “Disco Moses” parting the seas of dancers, his friends say.

In the lead up to October's parliamentary electionsExternal link, this is the first in a video series dedicated to looking at how political decisions affect the everyday lives of Swiss people.

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Elsewhere, however, physical and social impediments to a normal life persist.

Around 1.8 million people in Switzerland live with a disability, and though they’re treated equally in the eyes of politics and the law, the reality of daily access to the things the rest of us take for granted can be complicated.

It’s not just wheelchair-unfriendly public or private spaces, but also the skewed perceptions of others, who sometimes see Eddie as an awkward being to be treated with a condescension bordering on the comic – something he exploits to the full in his stand-up comedy shows.

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