|Walter Prepares To Talk Stammering|
Putney resident with a lifelong stammer to make a speech with a difference
On 14th July Walter Scott, 40, will address the Putney Rotary Club at the London Rowing Club on the stigma of stammering, as one of 600,000 UK adults who have the condition which often classed as a disability.
Walter, who lives near Putney Common and has stammered since the age of three, classes his dysfluency as 'worse than average'. Yet despite this he works as a government communications specialist, which has included working with ministers on speeches, chairing meetings and giving presentations.
While he is full of praise for the Government for enabling him to pursue an unlikely career for someone who stammers, he believes that UK businesses and society have generally low levels of empathy for the condition. In the past he has been rejected from jobs, struggled with how best to declare his impediment in the recruitment process, and been cut-off mid-speech while using telephone-based services.
Walter says: "Talking is a rather significant feature of life. It is also an important factor in displaying your character and abilities to other people, not least employers. Most people don't find cause to think about that, but when speech is jinxed by unpredictable dysfluency there are serious long-term implications for careers and relationships, which are all too easily confused with comedy. Society does discriminate and little has changed there in my lifetime, such that far too many people still suffer for their entire lives in silence.