Unless it effects them in some sort of personal way, the general public doesn’t realize just how difficult it can be for children and adults with special needs or disabilities to navigate through a world where nothing is set up with them or their unique needs in mind.
I certainly never realized just how inconsiderate, thoughtless, unfeeling or even hostile our world can be toward people with disabilities until we began our own journey into the world of special needs after my daughter became disabled following her brain tumor surgery.
• I had absolutely no idea how inaccessible our world is for those with special needs
• I had no idea that so many people with special needs and disabilities suffer with feelings of isolation and loneliness
• I had no idea how many people with disabilities are discriminated against and refused jobs
• I had no idea that most people with disabilities live in poverty I am ashamed to admit this but, I was not aware of or concerned with these issues before because they did not directly affect me or anyone that I loved.
While I can speak only for myself and my own ignorance on these grossly overlooked social issues, I most certainly assume that this just might be the same reason others are also unaware of the seriously grievous plight of the disabled.
I have since learned that if I want my daughter with special needs and disabilities to:
• Live in a caring, inclusive, accommodating world
• Have equal access to all aspects of society
• Have the same opportunities to receive an education as her non-disabled peers
• Have the same opportunities to be employed in meaningful and satisfying jobs as those without disabilities
• Live, work, and play alongside her typical peers
• be a valued and productive member of her community
Then I must make her community aware by advocating for my loved ones with special needs and disabilities By doing so, I will not only be advocating not for my own child with disabilities and special needs but I’ll also others be advocating for all others as well.
Eight Tips To Get Started in Advocating for the Disabled
• Taking Direct Action: Historically, direct action by the disabled and disabilities advocates have been the most effective in getting satisfactory results!
• Be informed: We need to know the laws that protect people with disabilities. We should make it our duty to know what is going on with disability policy makers in the country that you live in. We need to know what laws and bills are pending.
• Know Our Legislators Position: We should be contacting our legislators and making our concerns about people with disabilities known.
• Know What Going on in the Courts: We need to keep ourselves apprised of court cases concerning the children and adults with additional needs.
• Raise Public Awareness: We need to educate the public about disabilities in general and/or specific disabilities and the issues, obstacles, and concerns people with these disabilities experience.
• Use Social Media: We need to spread awareness on our social media accounts.
• Enroll in Disability Advocacy Training Courses: We need to learn how to professionally and effectively advocate for our loved ones.
At the very least we can purchase books and curriculum to home educate ourselves!
• Support disability rights groups The National Disability Rights Network is a useful disability advocacy resource in the United States.
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