‘I have always been one to stick up for myself. No matter who it is - if someone says something negative towards me it does get to me but I try my best to prove people wrong.'
Macauley Collinson, 23, who says people speak to him differently because of his disability, wants to break down barriers between non-disabled and disabled people.
Macauley was born with the very rare Moebius syndrome, a neurological condition that primarily affects the muscles that control facial expression and eye movement.
‘I can’t really close my mouth or show expression, and in my case the muscles in my right arm are weak as well,’ explained Macauley, from Lancaster. ‘A lot of people see my disability before they see me.’
Despite this, Macauley lives a very full life and enjoys playing football, boxing, and working at Booths supermarket.
Macauley's story will be broadcast on ITV Granada on Thursday, August 9, between 6pm and 6:30pm.
‘I want to get the message out there that having a disability is not the be all and end all,’ he said. ‘Yes I have this syndrome, but my life is good.
'I have a job, friends, hobbies – I have a life. I don’t want people to feel sorry for me – there are a lot worse things that could happen to someone.’
Macauley believes that sometimes people don’t approach people with disabilities because they are afraid of offending someone or saying the wrong thing.
‘The worst thing is when people come up to me and talk to me in a really patronising voice,’ Macauley added. ‘They judge me based on how I look and for some reason assume I need to be talked to like a child – I know people don’t mean anything bad by it – but it’s so frustrating to someone like me.
‘It’s better just to talk to disabled people and find out what they can and cannot do and then go from there.’
To find other resources on this topic, and watch Fixers films, click on the image below.