I’ve reported for Newshub and written for RNZ, the Spinoff, The Pantograph Punch, Overland Magazine and more. Feel free to get in touch with story ideas. I’m especially interested in climate change, immigration and disability. I’m also open to interview and speaking requests.
Disability and Accessibility
Disabled people make up nearly a quarter of the New Zealand population.
- Voting accessibility 2020: A mixed report card – RNZ, 2020
- Accessible Online Job Recruitment Must Be a Priority, Now and Always – Rooted in Rights, 2020
- Mike Oliver, pioneer of ‘revolutionary’ social model of disability, dies – reports – Newshub, 2019
- ‘Time for an honest discussion’: Disability a perceived barrier to career opportunities – research shows – Newshub, 2019
- Kiwis ahead of the game as Starbucks opens first American sign language café – Newshub, 2018
- Autism in women and girls: public and private diagnoses figures tell radically different stories – Newshub, 2018
- Opinion: What accessibility means to me – Attitude Live, 2018
- Advocating for a truly accessible Aotearoa – Blind Foundation, 2017
Generations of Change
In this seven-part series, disabled leaders dive deep into their round-about journeys into spearheading all kinds of change towards a more accessible, inclusive world. As a Generation Z disabled person, I ask them about growing up disabled forty or fifty years ago or acquiring disability as an adult. How has Aotearoa changed, or not, in the meantime? What unplanned moments would shape the lives of the visionary disabled people who dedicated themselves to making inclusion the norm?
With thanks to Imagine Better.
Disability and the Arts
New Zealand has some pretty cool audio described and sensory art offerings and I’ve written and been interviewed about a small sample of them.
- On a sensory art tour of Te Papa; Te Papa (museum)’s blog, 2018
- Áine Kelly-Costello on making arts and music more accessible – interview for RNZ, 2018
- Ballet in action through words – Arts Access Aotearoa, 2017
I’ve written about how community-building around disability pride has resonated with me. It’s complex but I’ve found it can be super validating.
- Disability Pride, setting the Agenda from Sweden – Proud to be Me, 2019
- Disability Pride: a movement whose time has come? – Newshub, 2018
- What could collective disability pride look like? – The Commentator, 2017
If my life experiences can offer you food for thought or can nuance commonly-held perceptions about blindness, I’m glad to share them.
- Interviewed (with captions) about my studies and work, travel and swimming – It’s my Job podcast, 2020
- Light Switches, Secrets and Single Stories: Growing Up Blind – Pantograph Punch, 2020
- What I hear when you tell me I am brave – Overland Magazine
- Opinion: In the smartphone era, Braille keeps opening doors – Newshub, 2019
- Presentation on growing up blind – LCA Family Conference, 2014 (captions not edited sorry)
Climate crisis and Environment
I’m writing my masters thesis about climate journalism in Aotearoa NZ, it’s an honour to interview reporters on this most important and most enduring of beats. There are many fronts on which to take climate and environmental action. Occasionally I write about it:
- The Legacy of a broken promise (Inside a grassroots campaign to protect conservation land from mining and how you can help) – Action Station on Medium, 2020
- Give power to Māori and marginalised communities and we’ll get through the climate emergency – The Spinoff, 2020
- Opinion: Here’s how GU could slash its largest source of carbon emissions – Utblick, 2020
- From humble beginnings to a key Government pledge: The journey of the Zero Carbon Act – Newshub, 2019
- Banning plastic bags and straws may be good PR, but are we actually helping the environment? – Newshub, 2018
- How Bill McKibben changed my Life – 350 Aotearoa, 2018
- Why I’m occupying for fossil fuel divestment – The Daily Blog, 2017
The ultimate crisis/inequity compounder. Some takes:
- Covid-19 Build Back Better: A disability lens on digging deep – Greenpeace, 2020
- How becoming a Covid long-hauler made me rethink disability – The Spinoff, 2020
- Opinion: Quarantine belongs under public health, stop categorising travelling Kiwis – RNZ, 2020
- Covid-19: Disability advocates on leaving no one behind – RNZ, 2020
I care a lot about helping all journalists and media outlets to represent disabled people authentically while creating inclusive environments where more disabled reporters are hired. Journalists and media orgs please get in touch if you’re interested in upskilling in this area. Also check out the Unbias the News story below.
- Another media reframe needed to include disabled perspectives – RNZ, 2020
- Interviewed for article in Swedish on blind journalists wanting to change media portrayals of disability – Dagens Nyheter, 2020
- Being a Disabled Journalist is Lonely: Let’s change that together; Unbias the News, 2020
- Here’s what I Learned when the Muckrakers United – Netzwork Recherche, 2019
I wrote a little series for Newshub (early 2019) about experiences accessing the welfare system.
- New report calls for ‘reform and transformational change’ to the welfare system
- Disabled work and income clients suffering harsh penalties for relationships and part-time work
- WINZ clients ‘beg’ for entitlements
- ‘Help given with one hand, taken away with the other’: Widowed mother speaks out about experience with Work and Income
Immigration and resettlement
I’ve moved around quite a bit, living in Ireland till I was five, then in Canada for a few years and mainly growing up in New Zealand. I was fortunate to spend an exchange semester in Spain, and the best part of the past year in Sweden and now Norway.
- Opinion: We need fairer immigration policy but it won’t be easy – Newshub, 2019
- Why these resettlement portraits meant so much to me – a blind immigrant – The Spinoff, 2018
I wrote a report for Transparency International NZ on What New Zealand can learn from the introduction of proactive disclosure in Spain. Nerdy? Yes.