SHADA meetings are evolving, with more disabled people taking part and new aims to produce leaflets to go on this website. We are told by some disability organisations that our leaflets are too explicit to hand out to clients, which is a shame. But, rather than omit important information and leave readers unclear, we hiope that they will at least signpost their users to them.

We try to run meetings which will satisfy the demands of the people who come along, and please let us know if there is anything you need to learn or discuess or bring to a meeting. We support health and care professionals who wish to work in this area but are not supported, discouraged, or even forbidden by their seniors, and we try to help them open constructive dialogue with them.

The next SHADA meeting will take place on Monday 21st October 2013. The focus of the meeting is open to see what members need or have to tell us.

If any member/newcomer feels they have made unique progress, or you are stuck trying to acheive your aim, please be in touch with Tuppy on 07770 884 985 to discuss how you might contribute to the day. There is a beautiful garden where we can eat lunch (please bring your own picnic).

Meetings are open to members only, so you do need to join before you can attend. Joining is free of charge.

Summaries of the meetings are detailed below – Full minutes of those meetings are linked in the right-hand menu.

SHADA delegates outside LCD 2


Below are the SHADA meetings to date.


16th Meeting

Delegates, speakers and personel attending the 16th Meeting in London





15th Meeting on 28th September 2012
chaired by Adam Thomas

This 15th Meeting brought together a dynamic board: Becky Adams who is starting Para-Doxies, agency providing sexual services for disabled people, Claire de Than, senior lecturer in human rights and criminal law at City University, Denise Banks, Director of Social Care Provision at the Chailey Heritage School and Dr Tuppy Owens.We discussed the potentials for providing disabled people with opportunities for sexual expression, and listed many ways in which disabled people, and
society gain from them meeting their sexual needs. Claire reassured everyone by telling us it was the duty of care to intervene to allow sexual expression, not intervening can make one liable, and Human Rights are central to any support of intervention.

Les Sutton spoke
about his new service. He is a social worker who, through Accessible
Sexuality, provides
individual support for disabled people in making applications and
challenging decisions regarding care provisions from social services,
specifically with relation to sexual needs.


14th Meeting on 13th April 2012
chaired by Adam Thomas

This meeting featured Susan Quilliam: her work and life. We watched the Sexual Respect Tool Kit film. In the afternoon we heard how Alex Cowan wishes to set up a Sex and Relationship Peers Support Network and we discussed how this might be most effective.


13th Meeting on 7th October 2011
chaired by Adam Thomas

The topic was alternative ways for people with various impairments to overcome them to start on the road to successful seduction and sexual relationships.

We started with a quadriplegic man, Dominic Webb talking about his journey into making the most of his voice to enjoy sex. He is using his voice to command a sumissive woman to do fuifil her sexual dreams. A demonstration followed. The rest of the SHADA attendees then did roleplays and there was feedback.


In the afternoon, we divided into small groups to apply the same principle (list what the person has and can do and work out novel ways to use those skills to enjoy sex). Groups discussed Aspergers, Deaf-Blind, Learning Disabilities and Spina Bifida. The findings are being followed up and made into leaflets.


Progress with the Sexual Respect Tool Kit was that it is almost ready for testing and will anybody who would like to use it in their workplace and give us feedback, please step forward.

The minutes have been circulated to members and will be put up on this site soon.


12th Meeting on  8th April 2011
chaired by Adam Thomas

Key Presentations on Spasms, Spasticity: Michele McDonald on spinal injury, Dominic Webb on baclofen pumps, Alex Cowan on MS and Eleni Stephani and Sarah Jones-Nash spoke about the difficulties some women with cerebral palsy experiences with spasms and vaginal intercourse

Other Presentations:
Kate Copstick on what it means to have Lupus and want a sex life.
Jonathan Werren, Outsiders Trustee on the Outsiders/TLC Trust Freedom of Information Survey on Local Authorities’ attitudes to their disabled people enjoying sex and hiring sex workers;
Alex Cowan and Tuppy Owens on the creation of a Sexual Respect Tool Kit;
Sue Lennon on the inclusion of discussing sexual activities in the holistic care of cancer patients;
Anji Page from Sense on the lack of success in campaigning against the Sexual Offences Act.
Mel and Steve Halacre on the development of their Spokz service of sex toys for disabled people.

Small Group Discussions: 

(a) spasms and spasticity

(b) the law


11th Meeting:  8th October 2010

Presentations on fatigue: Alex Cowan on the effect of MS-related fatigue on her sex life, and Victoria McKenzie on ME-related fatigue and relationships. 
Presentation: Alex, Tuppy and Roger Clements on the creation of a Sexual Respect Tool Kit. 
Small Group Discussions:
(a) policy on sex for residential homes with service users who have both learning and physical disabilities
(b) a leaflet on fatigue
(c) the Sexual Respect Tool Kit. 
 Lorna Couldrick on her chapter based on her workshop on the positive aspects of sex for the International Development Workshop.

10th Meeting:  8th March 2010

Presentation: Zoe-Grace Cozens on her business: Leapfrog Training which provides sex health policies and sex and disability training courses. 
Lorna Couldrick on her Sexual Development and Empowerment Workshop.
Discussion: The impact of the SHADA/RSM Conference
SHADA and the way we function.


9th Meeting : 12th October 2009

Presentation: Kate Wilkinson from Chaseley Trust on Neurological Conditions and their effect on sexual function.
Presentation: Mary Clegg of the  British Association of Sex Educators on sex toys for disabled people.
Presentation: Outsiders’ ‘Inner Nature’ day for people with spinal injuries to swap notes on sexual pleasure
Presentation: Lorna Couldrick on her visit to Holland to find out what sexual services are available to disabled people.


8th Meeting: 19th March 2009


7th Meeting: 5th November 2008

Presentation: Elizabeth Molligan from the Innovative Projects team at Leonard Cheshire, on their In Touch’ Project researching what information is available on sex for young disabled adults (18-24 year olds)

Presentation: Dr Petra Boynton, proposing an online survey on sex and disability training, training packs and a conference

Presentation: Lorna Coudrick – Strengths and Limitations of the PLISSIT model: a new model proposed

Presentation: Agnes Boes – Setting up a Sexual Health Service for People with Physical Disabilities in the Highlands of Scotland


6th Meeting: 16th April 2008

Presentation: Steve Shears from Headway ~ dealing with sexual disinhibition after brain injury


5th Meeting: 22nd November 2007

Presentation: Graham Jowett – Director of Education at Treloar Trust on his policy for offering young disabled people freedom to choose, at his residential college

Presentation: Ariana Chevalier on the health benefits of a sexual outlet and
the practical aspects of sex workers visiting care homes

Presentation: John Blandford – Criminal Lawyer, specialising in supporting those working in sex work, speaking on the legal issues of helping disabled people accessing sex workers, especially in relation to the Sexual Offences Act 2003.


4th Meeting: 30th March 2007

Presentation: Helena Barrow, Registered Manager of the Chaseley Trust in Eastbourne on the sexual issues in a residential home for physically disabled adults

Presentation:  Jo Holloway and Adam Thomas ~ Access to Health Project, The Elfrida Society on their work with learning disabled adults


Presentation: Debbee Arthur, Tamanna Choudhury, Sylvia Brookstein and William Donovan ~ Respond and the Respond Action Group on Respond’s work with learning disabled people, bullying, abuse and sexual relationships.


3rd Meeting: 13th October 2006

Presentation: Sex, Blindness and Visual Impairment, initiated by Sue Nathan, Outsiders’ Membership Secretary and led by Wayne Chapman,  of RNIB helpline, Barry Jones RNIB advocacy service and  Christine Thomas RNIB helpline manager

Presentation: Simon Parritt on his experience of working at SPOD and as a psychosexual counsellor


2nd Meeting: 12th May 2006

Presentation: Lorna Couldrick MSc, DipCOT, CertEd, MBACP (SnrAccred) on OT’s and other professionals dealing with disabled people’s sexual issues:

Presentation: Ilaria Primoni on The Sexual Dysfunction Association


1st Meeting: 7th June 2005

Discussion on how members and and disabled people will benefit from SHADA

Invitation to compare helpline policies

Presentaton:  Ana Martinez on the Sex Education Forum