Epilepsy Society replies to Katie Hopkins
This week Katie Hopkins has challenged our 'seize the day' campaign - a joint awareness campaign with River Island and Young Epilepsy. Sarah Vibert, director of external affairs at Epilepsy Society, replies.
Around 10,000 shopping bags bearing the slogan 'seize the day' were distributed by River Island during National Epilepsy Week, which ended on Saturday. The bags might have been designed and made by River Island - but the concept and slogan were the work of the two charities who speak daily to people affected by the condition.
The aim of the campaign was to get people talking about epilepsy - a condition which is very common yet rarely talked about.
Yes the slogan might be bold - but it's got people talking. And I think the responses to Katie Hopkins' tweet have opened up a very balanced conversation.
Some years ago there was a similar debate around the term 'brainstorm' which was thought to be offensive to people with epilepsy. In a survey carried out by Epilepsy Society about use of the term, 93 per cent of people with epilepsy did not find the term derogatory or offensive in any way and many felt that this sort of political correctness singled out people with epilepsy as being easily offended.
Epilepsy Society works tirelessly to ensure everything we do is informed and inspired by people affected by epilepsy. This is so that we can ensure our services are meeting the needs of people affected by epilepsy, as well as meaning that Epilepsy Society is able to represent the voices of our beneficiaries.
'Seize the day' is intended to be an empowering message for all, inspiring people with or without epilepsy to live life to its fullest despite the barriers they might face. We thank River Island.
A River Island spokesperson said: “River Island has long-standing relationships with Epilepsy Society and Young Epilepsy and this is a cause that is very important to us.
"We are very proud supporters of the great work that they do and will continue to help them with raising funds and awareness.”