This is an absolute pinch me moment. I’m a nominee in the Marie Claire Women of the Year awards. The category is changemakers. What an honour.
To be recognised by such a notable media outlet is a huge privilege, one I don’t take lightly. To have my testimony at the Disability Royal Commission noted by Marie Claire means so much – I gave evidence to help stop disabled people being abused in public places. I called on the police, esafety commissioner and social media platforms to keep us safer. I hope to see change.
The work I do – like calling for accessibility and better media representation of disabled people – doesn’t always make me popular, even among my peers. But I persevere, because I want to make the world more accessible and ensure that ichthyosis, facial difference and disability is better represented and more respected in every aspect of society. I don’t always get it right, but I always strive to listen, learn and be better.
To the other nominees – you are incredible and it’s amazing to be named alongside you. The work you do matters so much. Many of you I look to as a fan – Margot Robbie, Marcia Hines, Kylie Minogue, Cate Blanchett – wow! Others I look to as role models – Megan Davis, Narelda Jacobs, Hannah Diviney – you’re always showing up and showing us how we can be allies. And some of you I am lucky to call friends. Check out all the nominees on the Marie Claire website and their Instagram.
And thank you to the incredible disabled people who are doing great work to improve disability access, inclusion, representation and rights. I am proud to work alongside you.
When I got the email from Marie Claire about a month ago, I squealed. It was a total surprise, just like yesterday’s news of being a finalist in the National Disability Awards. And it was enormous recognition.
I’m exhausted right now. My body and mind are moving slowly to the finish line. It’s been a great year, and it’s been a hard one. Even tonight, I haven’t had a chance to properly reflect, because I had to rush to the chemist (in my Oodie) to get my pain meds before packing to fly interstate tomorrow. I’ll celebrate and reflect next week, in a very voluminous dress.
Thank you so much, everyone – especially to Adam, my parents, my friends and colleagues💜
PS: I said this on Marie Claire’s Instagram post tonight – because now is the time. “PS: I’ve said this on my own post – my work doesn’t make me popular, but I persist in asking for accessibility unapologetically. @marieclaireau please can you do image descriptions on your posts to make them accessible for disabled audiences. There’s some links on how to do this in my profile, or you can see how I’ve done them on my posts. I’m also happy to consult. Access is a human right. Thank you. ❤️”
Images: 1. the Marie Claire Women of the Year Changemaker nominees – Carly Findlay, Jess Hill, Grace Forrest and Lucy Small – their photos are above their names. 2. A screen shot from the Marie Claire website which details my achievements. Text reads: CARLY FINDLAY
Writer and speaker Carly Findlay has advocated for representation of disabled people across all walks of life, and has been instrumental in the recent Disability Royal Commission findings.3. a banner featuring white squares with photos of the nominees on gold backgrounds interspersed.