Christine McGuinness intimidated by man confronting her over disabled space

Christine McGuinness found herself in the middle of a confrontation after a man accused her of parking in a disabled space illegally.

The 33-year-old model has three autistic children with her husband Paddy, 47, seven-year-old twins Penelope and Leo, and Felicity, four.

Christine says she uses the parking space because of Leo’s “unpredictable” behaviour.

The Loose Women star said his anxiety can lead to meltdowns when they are on the lookout for places to park.

She is in need of a blue badge and is now calling for more kindness towards parents of children with autism.

Christine explained: “It was quite intimidating.

“The man said I wasn’t disabled, my children aren’t disabled, so why are you parked in a disabled space?

“I take any opportunity to educate people on autism. But there’s a time and a place and it’s not when I’m in a car park on my own with three children.

"We all need to remember to be kinder to each other. If there’s a blue badge in the window, just believe they’re entitled to be parked there.”

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Speaking on ITV’s Tonight programme, Hidden Disabilities: What’s the Truth, Christine says other parents she knows “gave up” applying for blue badges because the application is difficult and must be done every three years.

She added: “It’s quite disheartening to know I have to go through this same battle in three years’ time.”

The programme features other people with ‘hidden’ disabilities that are often confronted when using disabled facilities or questioned about their ability to work.

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MP Debbie Abrahams says: “People with hidden disabilities have the added difficulty of proving they need support. There is not always the expertise that’s needed, for example from the health assessors, to understand their clinical conditions.”

It is hosted by journalist Saima Mohsin, who suffered a nerve injury when her foot was run over by a jeep on assignment in Jerusalem.

She told The Mirror: “People with a physical disability have a tough time fighting for their rights.

"Having an invisible disability adds another layer of obstacles. I made this programme so we would give people a little more understanding and kindness.”

Christine and Paddy are filming a documentary about autism for the BBC which will air later this year.

Christine previously told how lockdown was an “uphill struggle” as they had to act as “therapists” for the kids.

She added: “It will be uplifting. We didn’t know much about autism. We had to educate ourselves, and now we want to pass that on.”

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