The Olika men lika project

Olika men lika is a three-year inheritance fund project. It is run by ABF Malmö in partnership with the organisation Tahrir. We mainly work in Malmö, but also in Skåne and the rest of Sweden.

People with functional impairments who are not comfortable with the Swedish language are currently excluded from major parts of Swedish society. For example, they often do not have the opportunity – or even the knowledge – to get the support they are entitled to.

The Olika men lika project aims to produce models, tools and strategies to develop how we can include people with functional impairments who have a mother tongue other than Swedish, so that they can take part in society on equal terms.

The key to achieving this is a method we call language justice. This helps us analyse how language barriers are created and remain. By using another method, participant involvement, we can put linguistic justice into practice by giving the target group what they actually ask for: concrete immediate help with their situation, often in connection with authorities.

This means that our project involves close cooperation with interpreters. The interpreters enable people to express themselves in the language they are most comfortable with. The interpreters have undergone further training in simultaneous interpreting and language justice.

Together, we can create a better life for everyone!


Functional impairment

A functional impairment is a reduction in physical, mental or intellectual functional capacity. A functional impairment can be a result from a disease or other condition, or from an injury occurring at birth or later in life (National Board of Health and Welfare.)

Language justice

Is about people’s right to listen, express themselves and be understood in the language they are most comfortable with (Tahrir).

Language barriers

Obstacles that exist or are set up so that people who do not share the same language are not able to communicate with each other.

Participant involvement

In this context, it means that people with a functional impairment who do not have Swedish as their mother tongue participate in the project by, for example, planning and carrying out an activity or by evaluating it.


When two or more parties carry out a task together to achieve a common purpose and benefits.

Simultaneous interpretation

Interpreting is carried out at the same time as the speaker talks. This often requires wireless equipment that the project provides.

Meeting place

This is a place where people can meet, a place where people can gather together voluntarily to seek companionship. The place can be both physical and/or digital.


An opportunity to meet a professional project staff without having to book an appointment in advance. Our drop-in offers visitors to meet with someone who is experienced in supporting people with functional impairments.

Influence/influential work

In this context we want to try to change other actors so that they can improve their contact with people with functional impairments who are not comfortable with the Swedish language.

Bureaucratic processes

These are rules that regulate contact between people and authorities.

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