Against the background of crisis and cuts, citizens can express solidarity with groups in various ways. Using novel survey data this article explores the attitudes and behaviours of citizens in their expressions of solidarity with disabled people and in doing so illuminates the differences and similarities across two European contexts: Italy and the UK. The findings reveal pools of solidarity with disabled people across both countries that have on the one hand similar foundations such as the social embeddedness and social trust of citizens, while on the other hand contain some differences, such as the more direct and active nature of solidarity in Italy compared to the UK and the role of religiosity as an important determinant, particularly in Italy. Across both countries the role of ‘deservingness’ was key to understanding solidarity, and the study’s conclusions raise questions about a solidarity embedded by a degree of paternalism and even religious piety.
- disabled people