Disability Studies

Call for Papers: World Religions and Disability: Cross-Cultural and Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Posted on 24 February 2009. Filed under: Call for Papers, Disability Studies, indigenous people, Opportunities | Tags: , , , , , , |

Call for papers
Title: World Religions and Disability: Cross-Cultural and Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Edited by: Darla Schumm and Michael Stoltzfus
Deadline for abstract submissions: May 1, 2009
Email: dschumm@hollins.edu and mjstoltz@valdosta.edu

The editors of World Religions and Disability: Cross-Cultural and Interdisciplinary Perspectives invite contributions for an inter-disciplinary and cross-cultural collection of essays that critically examine how the religions of the world represent, understand, theologize, theorize and respond to disability and/or chronic illness. Religious teachings and practices help to establish cultural standards for what is deemed “normal” human physical and mental behavior and in establishing a moral order for the fit and healthy body and mind. Religion plays an important role in determining how disability is understood and how persons with disabilities are treated or mistreated in a given historical-cultural context.

The existent literature exploring intersections between religion and disability typically focuses on a single religious tradition or cultural context, often prioritizing a Judeo-Christian approach. In response to the challenges and opportunities posed by a post-modern, pluralistic, global world, our goal in this volume is to promote interdisciplinary, cross-cultural, and inter-religious conversations regarding world religions and disability. We welcome a wide variety of methodological and theoretical approaches including ethnography, historical, cultural, or textual analysis, personal narrative, and theological/philosophical investigation. Contributors are especially encouraged to incorporate into their analysis literature and theoretical perspectives from the growing field of disability studies. Our aim is to produce a comparative text discussing religion and disability which gives voice to scholars and practitioners of many of the world’s rich and varied religious traditions, a

Abstracts not to exceed 600 words are due by May 1, 2009 and should be sent to: dschumm@hollins.edu and mjstoltz@valdosta.edu. The abstracts will be reviewed and decisions will be made regarding inclusion in the volume by June 15, 2009. Please note that acceptance of an abstract does not guarantee inclusion in the collection; editors will review and make final decisions upon receipt of the completed essays.

Any questions may also be directed to Darla Schumm and Michael Stoltzfus at the addresses listed above.

Possible topics may include, but are not limited to:
Asian religions and disability
Indigenous and/or native religions and disability
Disability and inter-religious comparison, contrast, and dialogue
Celtic, Druid, and/or Wiccan religions and disability
Religious and/or sacred texts and disability
Religion, prejudice, ethics and disability
Religious conceptions of creation, evil, sin, healing, suffering and disability
Religious/philosophical conceptions of the body or self and disability
Founders of religions (i.e. Mohammad, Buddha, Jesus, etc.) and their encounters with disability
The shaping of identity, religion, and disability
Religious rituals and the inclusion or exclusion of persons with disabilities
Critical perspectives on religion and disability
Theologies of disability

[Note from We Can Do editor: It is my hope that some readers might consider submitting abstracts/papers focusing on religion and disability in the context of developing countries, particularly in relation to topics such as poverty, human rights, or international development.]



I received this announcement via the Intl-Dev email news dissemination service, which people can subscribe to for free.

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Disability in Non-Western Societies: A Bibliography of Bibliographies

Posted on 18 January 2009. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Announcements, Cross-Disability, Deaf, Disability Studies, East Asia Pacific Region, Education, Middle East and North Africa, Poverty, Resources, signed languages, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Researchers who need to locate journal articles and other publications about people with disabilities throughout history in developing countries face significant barriers. People with disabilities outside of North America and Europe tend to be invisible in much of the published literature and throughout history.

Researchers can consult a list of annotated bibliographies at the Center for International Rehabilitation Research Information and Exchange (CIRRIE) as a starting point in seeking out thousands of articles that may meet their needs.

These bibliographies do not directly link to the articles in question. In many cases, I suspect these articles may not exist on-line. But the bibliographies could be used to help researchers know what publications they should seek out through the inter-library loan program at their university library.

A few examples of annotated bibliographies include: Disability in the Middle East; Disability and Social Responses in Some Southern African Nations; Disability and Social Response in Afghanistan and Pakistan; Disability & Deafness in North East Africa; Disability and Deafness in East Asia: Social and Educational Responses, from Antiquity to Recent Times; Sign, Gesture, and Deafness in South Asia and South-West Asian Histories; Social Responses to Disability & Poverty in Economically Weaker Countries: Research, Trends, Critique, and Lessons Usually Not Learnt; and more.

Researchers may begin exploring the various bibliographies (by author M. Miles) at

http://cirrie.buffalo.edu/bibliography/index.php



I found the page listing M. Miles’ various bibliographies by browsing the CIRRIE web site.

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CALL FOR PAPERS: Impact of Nanoscale Science on Disability

Posted on 29 September 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Call for Papers, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, Health, Inclusion, Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Opportunities, Poverty, technology, Water and Sanitation | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Call for papers On the impact of nanoscale science and technology on disability, community and rehabilitation.
[NOTE from We Can Do editor: The deadline for abstracts is October 30, 2008; full articles can be submitted later, for authors whose abstracts are selected. We Can Do readers will note that the areas of suggested possible focus may include the impact of nanotechnology on people with disabilities in low-income countries; on international development; and on relevant topics such as water and sanitation, the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, and others. Inquiries and abstracts should be directed to the journal, NOT We Can Do.]

For a special issue of the International Journal on Disability, Community & Rehabilitation (IJDCR) (http://www.ijdcr.ca/copyright.shtml)

Guest Editor: Gregor Wolbring, Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Program, Dept of Community Health Sciences, University of Calgary. <gwolbrin@ucalgary.ca>

Invitation
Nanoscale science and technology, while still in its infancy, describes a rapidly growing sphere of enquiry, with many and varied implications for the disability field. To establish a ‘benchmark’ of the current state of knowledge and conceptual understanding, the Editors of IJDCR decided a special issue should be devoted to the topic. Background information and potential topics are presented below.

We invite potential contributors, regardless of fields of study (discipline), to submit 250-word Abstracts that articulate the conceptual arguments and knowledge base to be covered in a critical analysis on some aspect of the impact of nanoscale science and technology on disability, community and/or rehabilitation. Please submit abstracts to the Guest Editor via e-mail by 30 October, 2008.

From selected abstracts, we will request full articles of 3000-5000 words (excluding figures and tables) of original research and scholarship on a range of topics. Note that an invitation to submit an article does not guarantee its publication. Every submitted article will be subject to blind peer review and recommendations arising.

Background
Nanotechnology in all its meanings allows for, among other things, the manipulation of materials on an atomic or molecular scale and enables a new paradigm of science and technology that sees different technologies converging at the nanoscale namely:

  • nanoscience and nanotechnology,
  • biotechnology and biomedicine, including genetic engineering,
  • information technology, including advanced computing and communications,
  • cognitive science (neuro-engineering),
  • synthetic biology;

hence, the designation “NBICS” (nano-bio-info-cogno-synbio).

Many lists of anticipated nanoproducts exist (Institute of Nanotechnology 2005;Kostoff et al. 2006). Applications for NBICS products are envisioned in areas such as the environment, energy, water, weapons and other military applications, globalization, agriculture, and health (e.g., more efficient diagnostics and genetic testing, cognitive enhancement; life extension and enhancing human performance in general) (M.Roco 2003). Many believe that advances in NBICS hold the key for extreme life extension to the level of immortality and the achievement of morphological (Anders Sandberg 2001) and genomic freedom(Wolbring 2003). NBICS-medicine is envisioned by some to have the answer to global problems of disease and ill medical and social health. Others argue for the pursuit of ‘morphological freedom’ (Anders Sandberg 2001)–allowing the human body to move beyond typical functioning of the species. Disabled people are often highlighted as the beneficiaries of NBICS-medicine products. NBICS applications and the selling of NBICS health products focuses mostly on offering disabled people medical solutions (prevention or cure/normative adaptation) and might move towards transhumanist solutions (augmentation, enhancement of the human body) but rarely offers social solutions (adaptation of the environment, acceptance, societal cures of equal rights and respect). Many NBICS applications/products for disabled people are envisioned and are under development(Wolbring 2005).

We chose this topic for an issue of IJDCR because of how the discourses around these new and emerging nanoscale science and technologies are emerging and their potential impact on people with disabilities, the communities linked to them and/or practitioners as well as others. Consumers and researchers linked to the disability discourse are involved will shape the positive or negative consequences for everyone involved.

Nanotechnology and NBICS have an impact on disabled people in at least four main ways.

Impact of NBICS on disabled people (Wolbring 2006)

NBICS may develop tools to adapt the environment in which disabled people live and to give disabled people tools that would allow them to deal with environmental challenges. This side of S&T would make the life of disabled people more liveable without changing the identity and biological reality of the disabled person

NBICS may develop tools that would diagnose the part of disabled people’s biological reality seen by others as deficient, defect, impaired and ‘disabled’ thus allowing for preventative measures

NBICS may develop tools that would eliminate that portion of disabled people’s biological reality seen by others as deficient, defect, impaired and ‘disabled’.

NBICS may be a target for – and an influence upon – the discourses, concepts, trends and areas of action that impact disabled persons.

Discourses:

  • The discourse around the term human security
  • The religious discourse
  • The politics of biodiversity
  • The politics of inequity
  • The politics of the ethics discourse.
  • The politics of law:
  • The politics of raising the acceptance level for a given technology
  • The politics of setting goals and priorities
  • The politics of language
  • The politics of self perception and identity (Body politics)
  • The politics of red herrings
  • The politics of interpreting International treaties
  • The politics of governance
  • The Politics of evaluation, measuring, analysis, and outcome tools

Concepts:

  • Self identity security
  • Ability security
  • Cultural identity/diversity
  • Morphological freedom and morphological judgement(Anders Sandberg 2001)
  • Freedom of choice and tyranny of choice
  • Duty to fix oneself
  • Duty to know
  • Parental responsibility
  • Societal responsibility

Trends:

  • Change in the concepts of health, disease and ‘disability’/’impairment’
  • The appearance of enhancement medicine and the acceptance of beyond species-typical functioning
  • Moving from curative to enhancement medicine; decrease in curative medicine and the appearance of the transhumanist/enhancement burden of disease
  • Moving from human rights to sentient rights
  • Moving from morphological freedom to morphological judgement
  • The appearance of the techno poor disabled and impaired
  • Moving from freedom of choice to tyranny of choice judgement

Areas of Action:

  • Nanotechnology/NBIC for development
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and the UN Millennium Development Goals
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and global medical and social health
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and accessibility
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and law
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and water and sanitation
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and disaster management
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and weapons/war
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and ethics/philosophy
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and social science/anthropology
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and community
  • Nanotechnology/NBIC and networking

All of the above discourses, concepts, trends and areas of actions impact on disabled people[1] and others.

Potential contributors to this Special Issue might consider areas from the above table or one of the following topics:

1. What are the potential positive and negative impacts of envisioned nanoscale science and technology products and research and development on:

  • disabled people,
  • the community around them
  • practitioners, consumers and researchers linked to the disability discourse
  • community rehabilitation and the rehabilitation field in general
  • inclusive education and the education of disabled people in general
  • employability of disabled people
  • citizenship of disabled people
  • body image of disabled people
  • medical and social health policies and their impact on disabled people
  • health care for disabled people
  • the elderly
  • disabled people in low income countries
  • laws related to disabled people such as the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities
  • the concept of personhood
  • concept of health and health care
  • the measure of disability adjusted life years and other measurements used to guide health care dollar allocation
  • quality of life assessment

2. What are the potential positive and negative impacts of the new social philosophy of transhumanism that is seen as being enabled by nanoscale science and technology products and research and development?
3. What impacts of potential nanoscale science and technology products and research and development onto disabled people will impact other marginalized groups?

For more information about the International Journal of Disability, Community & Rehabilitation (IJDCR) please go to http://www.ijdcr.ca.

References
Anders Sandberg. Morphological Freedom — Why We not just Want it, but Need it. 2001. <http://www.nada.kth.se/~asa/Texts/MorphologicalFreedom.htm>

Institute of Nanotechnology (2005). Research Applications And Markets In Nanotechnology In Europe 2005 <http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reportinfo.asp?report_id=302091&t=t&cat_id=4>

Kostoff, Ronald et al. “The seminal literature of nanotechnology research.” Journal of Nanoparticle Research (2006): 1-21. <http://www.springerlink.com/openurl.asp?genre=article&id=doi:10.1007/s11051-005-9034-9>

M.Roco, W. Bainbridge eds. Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance: Nanotechnology, Biotechnology, Information Technology and Cognitive Science. 2003. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht Hardbound. <http://www.wtec.org/ConvergingTechnologies/Report/NBIC_report.pdf> [PDF format]

Wolbring, G. “SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY AND THE TRIPLE D (DISEASE, DISABILITY, DEFECT).” Ed. William Sims Bainbridge Mihail C.Roco National. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic, 2003. 232-43<http://www.wtec.org/ConvergingTechnologies/> <http://www.bioethicsanddisability.org/nbic.html>

Wolbring, G (2005). HTA Initiative #23 The triangle of enhancement medicine, disabled people, and the concept of health: a new challenge for HTA, health research, and health policy Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research, Health Technology Assessment Unit, Edmonton, Alberta Canada <http://www.ihe.ca/documents/hta/HTA-FR23.pdf> [PDF format]

Wolbring, G (2006). Scoping paper on Nanotechnology and disabled people. Center for Nanotechnology in Society Arizona State University [On-line]. <http://cns.asu.edu/cns-library/documents/wolbring-scoping%20CD%20final%20edit.doc> [Word format]

——————————————————————————–
[1] The term ‘disabled people’, as used here, reflects the way in which environmental factors impact on the ability of individuals with sensory, motor, cognitive or other variations to participate in society, consistent with its usage by Disabled Peoples’ International.



Thank you to Gregor Wolbring for submitting this announcement for publication at We Can Do.

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History of Disability Rights in El Salvador

Posted on 18 August 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, Human Rights, Latin America & Caribbean, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Upside Down World has recently published an extensive history of the disability rights movement in El Salvador from the 1990s through today, with special attention to the 12-year civil war; land mines and land mine victims; disability-related legislation in the country; and the United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). 

El Salvador is one of 34 countries to have ratified the CRPD.  The CRPD is the first international, legally-binding treaty to protect the human rights of people with disabilities.  It protects many different human rights including: the right to healthcare and to informed consent in health services; the right to procreate and to obtain contraceptives; the right to education; the right to live with one’s own family in the community; and many more. 

El Salvador also is one of 20 countries to have ratified the accompanying Optional Protocol.  The Optional Protocol gives people with disabilities another way to obtain justice if their human rights have been violated under the CRPD.  People must first pursue all means of justice available to them within their own country.  If all of these attempts fail, and if their country has ratified both the CRPD and the Optional Protocol, then they may register a complaint with the international Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  The Committee is authorized to investigate human rights violations under the CRPD.

In addition to the countries that have ratified the CRPD and Optional Protocol so far, another 96 countries also have declared official interest in ratifying the CRPD in the future, and 51 of these countries also are officially interested in ratifying the Optional Protocol.  A country signals strong official interest in an international treaty by signing it.  Signing a treaty is the first step toward ratifying it.  A country that has signed a treaty is not yet obligated to obey it, but must still avoid taking actions that would violate it.  A country that has fully ratified a treaty must make its laws more consistent with the treaty by creating new laws as necessary, or by abolishing old laws that violate the treaty.

Read the full story on the history of disability rights in El Salvador, entitled “A Recent History of the Disability Rights Movement in El Salvador” at

http://upsidedownworld.org/main/content/view/1384/1/

Find out if your country has signed or ratified the CRPD and Optional Protocol at http://www.un.org/disabilities/countries.asp?navid=12&pid=166

Learn more about the CRPD and Optional Protocol by reading the RatifyNow FAQ.

Learn how you can become involved with the global campaign to promote the ratification and implementation of the CRPD and Optional Protocol in your country and elsewhere.

This blog post was first published at <a href=”http://www.RatifyNow.orgRatifyNow.org and is re-posted here with permission of author. RatifyNow is an organization working to promote the ratification and implementation of the CRPD around the world, and periodically posts links like this one to interesting news stories related to disability rights and the CRPD.

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REQUEST for PROPOSALS: Society for Disability Studies Seeks Conference Locations 2009, 2010

Posted on 25 June 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Call for Nominations or Applications, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, Events and Conferences, Opportunities | Tags: , , , , , |

The Society for Disability Studies is seeking conference locations for 2009 and 2010. They are particularly interested in finding an international location for at least one of those years, probably 2010.

The full Request For Proposals (RFP) is provided below. SDS has asked that people should please feel free to circulate widely. Anyone with questions or comments is welcome to contact Dr. Elaine Gerber directly at gerbere@mail.montclair.edu (NOT We Can Do).

Dr. Elaine Gerber is the President of the Society for Disability Studies and is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Montclair State University.

Society for Disability Studies
Disability in Scholarship, Activism, & the Arts

REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS

Society for Disability Studies seeks locations for
Annual Conference 2009
Annual Conference 2010

The Society for Disability Studies (SDS) is requesting proposals from institutions/organizations interested in hosting our annual conference in 2009 or in 2010. We are considering both national & international locations and either university or hotel venues. The conference generally draws between 300-400 people; sites must have sufficient access to accommodate many disabled participants. Proposals must be received by September 15, 2008.

Proposals should include:

1. Candidate(s) statement describing why site should be chosen as meeting location. In describing advantages, please include information about the following, if possible:

  • presence of local disability community & level of interest in hosting SDS
  • presence of educational institution(s) with Disability Studies programs & status of these programs
  • presence of accessible venues of adequate size for professional meetings & off-site events
  • affordability of location; costs
  • status of hotels with accessible rooms and degree of accessible transportation to/from location

2. What local resources are available to insure full, high quality access to the conference? Please describe level of commitment from key stakeholders at educational institution(s) and/or advocacy group(s) towards providing these resources.

3. What additional information would you like us to know?

Please submit all proposals and queries to Elaine Gerber, President SDS, at: gerbere@mail.montclair.edu

You may also consult the official SDS web site at: http://www.disstudies.org/



Thank you to Ghulam Nabi Nizamani for circulating this notice.

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CALL FOR PAPERS: Human Security, Social Cohesion and Disability

Posted on 29 January 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Call for Papers, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, Disaster Planning & Mitigation, Human Rights, Opportunities, Policy & Legislation, Poverty, technology, Violence | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Call for Papers – Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal (www.rds.hawaii.edu)

Human Security, Social Cohesion and Disability

Guest Editors: Gregor Wolbring, Program in Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies, Dept of Community Health Sciences, University of Calgary;

Anita Ghai, Department of Psychology Jesus and Mary College, New Delhi;

Kirk Allison, Program in Human Rights and Health, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota;

Human security and social cohesion are two central requisites for the medical and social well being of disabled people. Science and technology (S&T) advances often seen as essential for disabled people also impact on human security and on social cohesion. Human security according to the Commission on Human Security is concerned with safeguarding and expanding people’s vital freedoms. It requires both shielding people from acute threats and empowering people to take charge of their own lives. The Commission identified economic security, food security, health security, environmental security, personal security, community security, political security, freedom from fear, and freedom from want as primary concerns.

Social cohesion in very general terms means: All that which brings people together (European New Towns Platform). In Canada the following description is in use: “Social cohesion is the ongoing process of developing a community of shared values, shared challenges and equal opportunity within Canada, based on a sense of trust, hope and reciprocity among all Canadians.” (Jeannotte and Sharon, 2001). This has also been articulated complementarily in terms of social capital which has been defined among others as “features of social organization such as networks, norms, and social trust that facilitate coordination and cooperation for mutual benefit” (Putnam 1995).

More about the concepts can be found in the below references:

  • Gregor Wolbring (2006). Human Security and NBICS http://www.innovationwatch.com/choiceisyours/choiceisyours.2006.12.30.htm
  • Gregor Wolbring (2007). NBICS and Social Cohesion http://www.innovationwatch.com/choiceisyours/choiceisyours-2007-01-15.htm
  • Caroline Beauvais and Jane Jenson.(2002) Social Cohesion: Updating the State of Research. Canadian Policy, Research Networks, Canadian Heritage, Ottawa. http://www.cprn.com/doc.cfm?doc=167&l=en
  • European New Towns Platform. (2005). “The Top 8 Specific Challenges for Social Cohesion in New Towns.” http://www.newtowns.net/themes
  • Definitions of Social Capital http://www.analytictech.com/networks/definitions_of_social_capital.htm
  • Social Captial Initiative, Working Paper 1, 1998, http://go.worldbank.org/W8FMEK6FR0
  • We are honored that the theme for an issue of The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal will be human security, social cohesion and disability. This topic is chosen because the discourse around human security and social cohesion is of central importance for disability studies and for the well-being of persons with disabilities. At the same time discourses in disability studies can crucially clarify and test the discourses of human security and social cohesion.

    Thus, we urge potential contributors, regardless of their fields of training, to articulate their ideas about human security, social cohesion and disability. We especially encourage contributors to envision:

    • Future threats to human security and social cohesion including threats linked to new and emerging sciences and technologies processes and products and their impact on disabled people.
    • How disability studies discourses have generated tools and will continue to generate tools which can be used to minimize future threats to social cohesion and human security.
    • Other possible prevention strategies and fixes to possible future threat to human security and social cohesion.

    We encourage the submission of empirical case studies and theoretical models and we especially encourage contributions which cover the topic from a low income country background.

    Potential contributors to this Special Issue might consider:

    1. What is the “disability,” the discrimination angle of human security and social cohesion?
    2. What is the body image angle of human security and social cohesion?
    3. What is the importance of the disability studies angle on human security and social cohesion for other marginalized groups, for the marginalized majority of the world?
    4. What are potential future threats to human security and social cohesion and what would the impact be on disabled people?
    5. What are the cultural angles of human security and social cohesion?
    6. What is the role and potential of law?
    7. What empirical evidence and theoretical models illuminate the processes and effects?
    8. What is the impact of emerging social concepts such as transhumanism, which is?
    9. What is the impact of new and emerging sciences and technologies?
    10. What role does or could disability studies be playing in the interaction between new and emerging sciences and technologies and human security and social cohesion?
    11. How do or do not the human security and social cohesion discourses serve the needs of disabled people?
    12. What are the connections between human security and violent conflict?
    13. What are the relationships between development and poverty reduction, human security, and the prevention of violent conflict?
    14. What is the impact of natural disasters on those with disabilities in terms of security and cohesion
    15. How can social capital be discussed in context of disabled people, human security and social cohesion?

    Send via email 250-word abstracts, by March 31st, 2008 to Guest Editors Gregor Wolbring gwolbrin@ucalgary.ca ; Anita Ghai anita.satyapal@gmail.com and Kirk Allison alli0001@umn.edu. Please be sure to send abstracts to all editors. For those abstracts that are selected, we will request completed articles of approximately 3000-5000 words two months after the note of invitation to submit a full article was sent. Note that an invitation to submit an article based on an abstract does not guarantee publication of that article in The Review of Disability Studies.

    For more information about The Review of Disability Studies, please go to www.rds.hawaii.edu



    We Can Do received this announcement via the Global Partnership for Disability and Development (GPDD) email distribution list, which can be joined for free.

    The Review of Disability Studies journal has been featured before at We Can Do: see an earlier, more generic call for papers at RDS, or see a listing of previous RDS articles relevant to people with disabilities in developing countries, with abstracts.

    Check for other calls for papers.



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    CALL FOR FILMS: WeCare Filmfest on Disability Issues

    Posted on 29 January 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Arts, Call for Audio & Visual Materials, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, Events and Conferences, Opportunities, South Asian Region | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    Entries of films and documentaries on the various issues of disability are invited for Wecare Filmfest-2008 organized by BROTHERHOOD.

    The last date for submitting films and documentaries to the Wecare Filmfest is February 9, 2008. If you are interested in entering the Wecare Filmfest, please send your entries ON OR BEFORE February 9, 2008.

    The Filmfest itself will be held February 20-21, 2008, in the India International Centre, 40 Max Mueller Marg, Lodhi Estate, New Delhi-110 003. A large number of films and documentaries already have been received from multiple countries, including India, on various disability issues. More entries are welcome from countries around the world. All films should be subtitled in English or in Hindi or both. Films in DVD, CD, or VHS are preferred.

    Entries are invited in the following four categories based on length of the film or documentary: up to one minute; up to 5 minutes; up to 30 minutes; up to 60 minutes. Application fees will be required: 500 Rupees for films up to 1 minute or 5 minutes; 1000 Rupees for films up to 30 minutes or 60 minutes. (Use the currency converter at http://www.xe.com for a rough estimate of how much this is worth in your country’s currency.)

    Prize money is available for winning entries, ranging from 10,000 to 50,000 rupees depending on placement (1st, 2nd, or 3rd) or on category (films up to 1 or 5 minutes, versus films up to 30 or 60 minutes).

    Entries arriving after February 9 (i.e., after the deadline) will NOT be eligible to compete.

    The Wecare Filmfest is organized by Brotherhood in association with Iridium Interactive (on-line partner); Asian Academy of Film and Television (Technical Support); and I-Congo (Knowledge partner).

    BROTHERHOOD has been using the Audio-visual media since 2002 to initiate discussions and dialogue for the integration of people with disability into the mainstream of society. Brotherhood reports that it has initiated several projects that demonstrate the power of film and documentaries to educate the public about disability issues. Films and documentaries can dispell myths, stereotypes and misconceptions about people with disabilities. And they can promote a new approach to disability involving equal rights, opportunities, and access.

    Read more about the National Disability and Communication Resource Centre and their library of books, manuscripts, periodicals, still photographs, posters, and audio-video recordings on disability issues both from within India and from outside the country: http://www.ndfconline.org.

    Download the entry form for the festival in PDF format at:

    http://www.ndfconline.org/images/Film_Festival/firstfilmfestivalreport__.pdf

    The entry form provides more details on criteria for film and documentary entries and how to submit your entries.

    Inquiries related to the Wecare Filmfest can be directed to:

    The Director
    Wecare FilmFest, Brotherhood
    B-4/156 (Basement), Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi-110 029.

    Email: wecarefilmfest@gmail.com
    Website: www.ndfconline.org
    Mobile: 9811012065

    Please do NOT direct inquiries about the Wecare Filmfest to We Can Do. Instead, please contact the Wecare Filmfest organizers directly with the contact information provided above.



    Thank you to Ghulam Nabi Nizamani for passing along the original announcement on which this blog post is based.



    Learn how to receive an email alert when new material is posted at We Can Do (wecando.wordpress.com).

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    JOURNAL: The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal

    Posted on 17 January 2008. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Children, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, East Asia Pacific Region, Education, HIV/AIDS, Human Rights, Middle East and North Africa, Rehabilitation, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    [Originally published at wecando.wordpress.com (We Can Do) at http://tinyurl.com/2gkrzx]

    Skip to list of articles

    Researchers and students, but especially people new to their field, can find it challenging to locate research, essays, and other academic literature about people with disabilities in developing countries. This may be in part because there are few international, disability-oriented journals available to publish such literature. One of the few exceptions is The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal (RDS).

    The RDS journal publishes research articles, essays, and bibliographies on the culture of disability and people with disabilities. On occasion, it also publishes poetry, short stories, creative essays, photographs, and art work related to disability. It publishes four times a year, with approximately 50 pages in each issue. People can subscribe to RDS for a fee, or people can download past issues of RDS for free. Issues from 2006 onward are available in either Word format or PDF format; older issues are available in text-only format.

    This publication is not focused solely on developing countries. In fact, many of its articles are written by researchers and writers in industrialized countries, particularly the United States. But some of its articles may be of interest to We Can Do readers. Some examples are listed further below. I chose some of these articles because they deal specifically with disabled people in developing countries; I list others because they deal with broader themes, such as exclusion, that transcend national and income boundaries.

    Please note that it is not possible to download separate articles. To read a specific article that interests you, you will need to download the full issue it is in and then skip ahead to the correct page. Page numbers given are based on the PDF version where applicable. Page numbers will be slightly different in the Word version. Or click on the hyperlink within the Word file to be taken directly to the article you select.

    Please also note that this is not a comprehensive listing of all articles in past issues of RDS. For example, I usually skipped over book reviews–but I did see a few for books that would be relevant to disabled people in developing countries. You may wish to explore the RDS on your own by following this link.

    Selected RDS Articles

    A Little Story to Share

    A Little Story to Share” by Lee-chin Heng, Volume 1, Issue 2, 2004, page 109-111. Abstract: An autobiographical story of a person from Malaysia with physical disabilities who possesses an associate diploma in music. Download in text-only format (2.1 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSissue012004.pdf .

    Who is Disabled?

    Who is Disabled? Who is Not? Teachers Perceptions of Disability in Lesotho” by Christopher Johnstone, Ph.D. Candidate Educational Policy and Administration University of Minnesota, Volume 1, Issue 3, 2005, starting on page 13. Abstract: This paper reports on educational research conducted in Lesotho, Southern Africa. Mixed methods of research were used to elicit and describe teachers’ attitudes toward children they perceived as disabled. The study took place in a country where discussions on ‘the Continuum’ of services, specialist diagnoses, and Western notions of assistive technology are largely irrelevant. Over-arching themes are compared to themes that have emerged from special education and Disability Studies literature over the past decade. Download in text-only format (715 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS01032005.pdf

    Evaluation of MA Program in Rehabilitation Counseling

    Evaluation of Master of Arts Program in Rehabilitation Counseling and Guidance Service for Persons with Disabilities in Thailand” by Tavee Cheausuwantavee, M.Sc. Ratchasuda College, Mahidol University, Thailand, Volume 1, Issue 3, 2005, starting on page 66. Abstract: This research examines the positive and negative aspects of the Master’s Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling and Guidance for persons with disabilities in Thailand, since it began in 1997. A CIPP model was utilized for the program evaluation. Multiple methods were used to collect the data, and both retrospective and prospective data collection were undertaken. The research results indicated many positive outcomes. They also indicated certain features of rehabilitation within the Thai context differed significantly from traditional rehabilitation counseling programs in Western countries. Download in text-only format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS01032005.pdf

    Leprosy in South India
    Leprosy in South India: The Paradox of Disablement as Enablement” by James Staples, Ph.D., School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, Volume 1, Issue 4, 2005, starting on page 13. Abstract: Rooted in ethnographic fieldwork with people affected by leprosy in India, this article argues that certain impairments, in certain social contexts, are simultaneously disabling and enabling. This paradox poses difficult challenges, not only for those working with individuals affected with leprosy, but for disability activists
    andpolicy-makers. Download in text-only format (3 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS01042005.pdf

    Social and Economic Stress Related to HIV/AIDS Epidemic in Botswana
    Social and Economic Stress Related to the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in Botswana” by Thabo T. Fako, Ph.D. & Dolly Ntseane, Department of Sociology,University of Botswana & J. Gary Linn, Ph.D. & Lorna Kendrick, R.N., Ph.D. School of Nursing Tennessee State University, Volume 2, Issue 1, 2006, starting on p. 33. Abstract: The paper describes the consequences of HIV/AIDS in Botswana; the country with the highest HIV prevalence rate in Africa. In addition to frequently experienced trauma due to sickness and death, many households experience rising health expenditures and a sharp deterioration of incomes. High levels of morbidity and mortality among workers result in depressed returns on investment, reduced productivity and increased expenditure on training and replacement of workers. As the health care system finds it increasingly difficult to cope, home-based care provides an inadequate solution since the home infrastructure of many households is inadequate for proper care of seriously ill patients. The stigma associated with AIDS often isolates fragile households and provides an environment in which abuse of infected individuals and of orphans whose parents have died of AIDS is not uncommon. The quality of education also suffers, resulting in an ill prepared skilled manpower, with adverse consequences for social, economic, and political development as well as for good future governance of the country. Download in PDF format (3 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS02012006.pdf or in Word format (800 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS02012006.doc

    Toward a Global History of Inclusive Travel
    Toward a Global History of Inclusive Travel” by Laurel Van Horn, M.A., Open Doors Organization, USA; José Isola, President, Peruvian Polio Society, Peru, Volume 2, Issue 2, 2006, starting on page 5. Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the development of inclusive travel and tourism, from its origins in the United States and Europe following World War I and II to its current status as an increasingly important and viable movement worldwide. The paper investigates the key roles played by disability organizations, disability rights legislation, technological change, international organizations and pioneers within the travel and tourism industry. Developments are described sector by sector for air travel, ground transport, the cruise lines and the hospitality industry. While the primary historical focus is the U.S., the paper also highlights advances taking place in Dubai, Egypt, India, Japan, South Africa, Thailand and other countries. It concludes with a case study by José Isola of the development of inclusive travel in Peru. Mr. Isola also describes disability conferences that took place in South America in 2004. It is hoped others will begin to investigate the development of inclusive travel in their own countries and regions and contribute to a truly global history. Download in PDF format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS020206.pdf or in Word format (700 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS020206.doc

    Ethnobotany on a Roll!
    Ethnobotany on a Roll! Access to Vietnam by My Lien T. Nguyen, Ph.D., Department of Botany, University of Hawai’i, at Mānoa, Volume 2, Issue 2, 2006, starting on page 36. Abstract: This article describes the research and experiences of an ethnobotanist with a physical disability working in Vietnam. Due to a spinal cord injury, the ethnobotanist uses a wheelchair and walking canes to explore the bustling food markets of Vietnam. Information and recommendations are provided for equipment and traveling to and in Vietnam, particularly for those interested in conducting scientific research and for travelers with physical disabilities. Success is largely due to the mutual respect and kindness shared by people along the way, and by accepting and accommodating to given situations. Appendices of resources for travel in Vietnam and educational granting sources for people with disabilities provided. Download in PDF format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS020206.pdf or in Word format (700 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS020206.doc

    The Benefits of Studying Abroad
    Making an Impact: The Benefits of Studying Abroad” Michele Scheib, M.A., Project Initiatives Specialist, National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange, Volume 2, Issue 2, 2006, starting page 50. Abstract: Qualitative interviews with ten individuals with disabilities who participated in a study abroad program within the past eight years, compared equally to long-term outcomes cited in studies with the general study abroad alumni population. Students reported increased self-confidence, independence and career or educational gains related to their study abroad experiences. Download in PDF format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS020206.pdf or in Word format (700 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS020206.doc

    Esau’s Mission
    Esau’s Mission, or Trauma as Propaganda: Disability after the Intifada” by Marcy Epstein, University of Michigan, Volume 2, Issue 3, 2006, starting on page 12. Abstract: Israelis and Palestinians, while sharing an I/Abrahamic root, many chapters of Semitic history, and common values of resourcefulness and valor, both have defended their cultural boundaries through the exchange of mutilating, annihilative blows upon the other. The intifada (an Arabic word meaning to shake off or shiver because of illness, fear, or weakness) of the millennium signify a trope of body and status among the fragmented population in the region; specifically, the propagandizing of traumatic events that suggest victimization and invalidation. The discursive nature of “unnatural” catastrophe–devastation of Palestinian communities by Israeli Defense Forces, blitzing of Israeli civilians in planned attacks–substitutes the propaganda of trauma for the reality of disability experienced in both cultures. Reflecting the duality of rhetorical positions seen in I/Abraham’s disposition of both Isaac and Esau, this essay links the root of trauma propaganda to the ideology of religious fitness and righteousness. Download in PDF format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS02032006.pdf or in Word format (600 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS02032006.doc

    Natural Hazards
    Natural Hazards, Human Vulnerability and Disabling Societies: A Disaster for Disabled People?” by Laura Hemingway & Mark Priestley, Centre for Disability Studies, University of Leeds (UK), Volume 2, Issue 3, 2006, starting on page 57. Abstract: The policy and research literature on disaster management constructs disabled people as a particularly “vulnerable group.” In this paper we combine concepts from disaster theory and disability theory to examine this assumption critically. Drawing on primary, secondary and tertiary sources, we assess the vulnerability of disabled people in two globally significant disasters: Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and the Asian tsunami of December 2004. In both cases, disabled people were adversely affected in terms of their physical safety and access to immediate aid, shelter, evacuation and relief. Using a social model analysis we contest the view that this vulnerability arises from the physical, sensory or cognitive limitations of the individual and show how it may be attributed to forms of disadvantage and exclusion that are socially created. The paper concludes that “natural hazards” are realized disproportionately as “human disasters” for disabled people, and most notably for disabled people in poor communities. Social model approaches and strong disabled people’s organisations are key to building greater resilience to disaster amongst “vulnerable” communities in both high-income and low-income countries. Download in PDF format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS02032006.pdf or in Word format (600 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS02032006.doc

    Politics and the Pandemic
    Politics and the Pandemic: HIV/AIDS, Africa, and the Discourse of Disability” by Laura L. Behling, Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnesota, Volume 2, Issue 3, 2006, starting page 97. First Paragraph: In 2004, Africa News filed a report on then 12-year old William Msechu, a young African who lost both of his parents to AIDS in 1999. He, too, was HIV positive. Msechu is characterized as a “very bright boy,” although, the article reports, he is “yet to come to terms with his HIV status.” “I was told that I have tuberculosis and I am getting better,” the article quotes William as saying to journalists (“HIV-AIDS and STDs” 2004). William Msechu’s disbelief at having contracted HIV is unremarkable; persons diagnosed with severe diseases, including HIV/AIDS, often work through denial and incredulity.1 Just as unremarkable, however, is Msechu’s contention that he had not tested positive for HIV, but rather, had contracted tuberculosis, another widespread disease but not nearly as stigmatizing as HIV/AIDS. Substituting “tuberculosis” for “HIV” may be an affirming measure for Msechu, but it also provides one more example of the rhetorical slipperiness that historically, and still continues to accompany, the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Download in PDF format (1.4 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDS02032006.pdf or in Word format (600 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDS02032006.doc

    Seeing Through the Veil
    Seeing Through the Veil: Auto-Ethnographic Reflections on Disabilities” by Heng-hao Chang PhD., Nanhua University, Chia-Yi, Taiwan, Volume 2, Issue 4, 2006, starting page 6. Abstract: This article is an auto-ethnography reflecting the interactions among society, my family and my brother who has Cerebral Palsy. The experiences of me and my family show the visible and invisible veils that segregate people with disabilities and their families from mainstream Taiwanese society.” Download in PDF format (1 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv02iss04.pdf or in Word format (630 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv02iss04.doc

    Building Familial Spaces
    Building Familial Spaces for Transition and Work: From the Fantastic to the Normal” by Joakim Peter, MA, College of Micronesia—Federated States of Micronesia, Chuuk Campus, Volume 2, Issue 4, 2006, starts page 14. Abstract: Transition for persons with disability is a process of negotiating difficult situations and barriers set by others and by systems. My strategies to overcome those barriers in my personal transitions through education systems and employment included the creations of familiar spaces in which group support plays a major role. This paper tracks my process through the familiar spaces and gives examples of encounters with barriers along my transition through hospital treatments to schools and then work.” Download in PDF format (1 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv02iss04.pdf or in Word format (630 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv02iss04.doc

    A Model for Learning from Children
    Family Focused Learning: A Model for Learning from Children with Disabilities and Their Families via Technologies for Voice” by James R. Skouge, Kathy Ratliffe, Martha Guinan, & Marie Iding University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, Volume 2, Issue 4, 2006, starting page 63 Abstract: In this paper, we describe a collaborative multidisciplinary model for faculty and students learning about culture and children with disabilities and their families in Pacific Island contexts. The model, Family Focused Learning, incorporates aspects of case-based and problem-based learning within the context of “consumer” and “professional” partnerships (Ratliffe, Stodden, & Robinson, 2000; Robinson, 1999).Children with disabilities and their families share the daily challenges and successes of their lives with graduate students and faculty at the University of Hawai‘i, via video letters, video mapping, cultural brokering and satellite videoconferencing. To illustrate this process, we present the story of “Tomasi,” a child with cerebral palsy in American Samoa, a US territory. Tomasi and his family are “given voice” and act as teachers for an interdisciplinary team of faculty and students from public health, social work, physical therapy, speech pathology, nursing, special education, nutrition, medicine, political science and law.” Download in PDF format (1 Mb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv02iss04.pdf or in Word format (630 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv02iss04.doc

    Social Change and the Disability Rights Movement
    Social Change and the Disability Rights Movement in Taiwan 1981-2002” by Chang, Heng-hao. Ph.D., Department of Sociology, Nanhua University of Chia-Yi, Volume 3, Issues 1 & 2, 2007, starting on page 3. Abstract: This paper provides a historical overview of the disability rights movement in Taiwan from 1981 to 2002. It shows the major events in Taiwanese disability history, legislation, and development of disability rights organizations, with a focus on two influential advocacy associations: the Parents’ Association for Persons with Intellectual Disabilities (PAPID) and the League of Enabling Associations (LEAs). It also demonstrates that the disability movement has developed in concert with Taiwan’s democratic transition.” Download in PDF format (780 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv03iss01.pdf or in Word format (770 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv03iss01.doc

    Disability and Youth Suicide
    Disability and Youth Suicide: A Focus Group Study of Disabled University Students” by Esra Burcu, Ph.D., Hacettepe University, Department of Sociology, Volume 3, Issues 1 & 2, 2007, starting page 33. Abstract: For young people thoughts of suicide are based on various social factors. The research literature in this area reveals that there are two important interrelated factors that correlate with suicide rates: being young and being disabled. This study was undertaken in order to explore possible reasons for this increased tendency for young disabled people to commit suicide. The study was carried out at a university in Turkey with a group of disabled students. All the members of the focus group had thoughts of suicide and felt that their disability played an important role in creating these thoughts. The basic premise of the research was that physical disability increases the young person’s isolation and social loneliness and this can generate ideas of suicide in the young person’s mind that may be acted upon.” Download in PDF format (780 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv03iss01.pdf or in Word format (770 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv03iss01.doc

    Impact of the South Asian Earthquake
    Impact of the South Asian Earthquake on Disabled People in the State of Jammu and Kashmir” by Parvinder Singh, Ph.D. Candidate, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Volume 3, Issue 3, starting page 36. Abstract: On the morning of October 8, 2005, a devastating earthquake, measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale, struck the Kashmir region with its epicentre near Muzzafarabad in Pakistan-administrated Kashmir. It took a while for both India and Pakistan to comprehend the scale of destruction that the quake had unleashed. In the two weeks following, the quake had left over 50,000 dead on the Pakistani side of the India-Pakistan border and claimed 1,300 lives on the Indian side. A second wave of deaths was expected with the onset of the region’s notorious winter. Download in PDF format (600 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv03iss03.pdf or in Word format (380 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv03iss03.doc. Or, this article has also been published at We Can Do with permission of the author and RDS.

    The Scale of Attitudes Toward Disabled Persons
    The Scale of Attitudes Towards Disabled Persons (SADP): Cross-cultural Validation in a Middle Income Arab Country, Jordan” by Kozue Kay Nagata, Senior Economic Affairs Officer of the Development Cooperation Branch, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Volume 3, Issue 4, 2007, starting page 4. Abstract: The purpose of this pilot study was to assess the level of the existing attitudinal barriers towards disabled persons in four communities of Jordan. Jordan is a middle income Arab country, with a PPP-adjusted GDP/capita of US$ 4320. The study attempted to determine the present level as a baseline of prejudice against people with a disability in Jordan, and to examine the relationship between the randomly selected participants’ attitudes and their previous exposure to and experience with disability. The Scale of Attitudes towards Disabled Persons (SADP) was selected as the instrument. An Arabic translated version of the Scale was used for 191 participants. The respondents showed overall negative attitudes towards disabled persons, as illustrated by previous documented materials. The result of this survey was highly correlated with the collective opinion expressed by the focus group that was conducted by the author in Amman in January, 2005. Thus, the cross-cultural validity of this instrument has been confirmed, and the major findings of this pilot study could inform future policy directions and public awareness raising strategies to foster positive public attitudes. Download in PDF format (530 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv03iss04.pdf or in Word format (410 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv03iss04.doc

    Barriers to Education
    Barriers to Education for People with Disabilities in Bekaa, Lebanon” by Samantha Wehbi, MSW, Ph.D., School of Social Work, Ryerson University, Volume 3, Issue 4, starting page 10. Abstract: This paper presents the findings of a recent study on the educational situation of people with disabilities in Lebanon. The main findings of a survey conducted with 200 participants in the impoverished rural Bekaa region illustrate the inadequate educational situation of people with disabilities. The focus of the paper is on a discussion of the barriers that people with disabilities face in pursuing their education. Participants identified the following difficulties in pursuing their education: educational system barriers, inadequate finances, health issues, transportation difficulties, and family pressures. Although the focus of the article is not on factors that can facilitate educational achievement, some of these supports are identified, including family support and personal motivation. The article concludes with a discussion of current and planned community responses such as the development of an interdisciplinary community action network (The Inclusion Network), the provision of literacy courses, and a pilot project to foster the inclusion of children with disabilities in mainstream schools. Download in PDF format (530 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv03iss04.pdf or in Word format (410 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv03iss04.doc

    Jordan and Disability Rights
    Jordan and Disability Rights: A Pioneering Leader in the Arab World” by Kenneth R. Rutherford, PhD, MBA, Missouri State University, Volume 3, Issue 4, 2007, starting page 23. Abstract: This article investigates Jordan’s rationale for assuming a leadership role on the disability rights issue in the Arab World. Tens of millions of people, including over ten percent of Arab families, are impacted and impoverished because of disability. To address this substantial challenge, the Jordan Royal family has leveraged Jordan’s tradition of openness and generosity coupled with one of the best educational systems in the Arab World to promote disability issues. As a result, Jordan is recognized by the international community as leading the Arab World in promoting disability rights. Jordan’s international and regional leadership on disability rights was recognized in 2005 when Jordan received the Franklin Delano Roosevelt International Disability Award. Download in PDF format (530 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/pdf/RDSv03iss04.pdf or in Word format (410 Kb) at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/issues/doc/RDSv03iss04.doc

    You can browse and download past issues of the Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/downloads/.

    Or you can learn more about the RDS at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/about/.

    The RDS is always looking for new authors to submit materials for publication.



    Learn how to receive an email alert when new material is posted at We Can Do.

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    CALL FOR JOURNAL SUBMISSIONS: The Review of Disability Studies an International Journal

    Posted on 16 January 2008. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Announcements, Call for Papers, Cross-Disability, Disability Studies, Opportunities | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    [Original publication at wecando.wordpress.com (We Can Do) at http://tinyurl.com/2z68p8]

    Call for Journal Submissions:
    The Review of Disability Studies an International Journal
    , www.rds.hawaii.edu

    In order to address the need for an internationally-focused academic journal in the field of Disability Studies, in 2003 the late David Pfeiffer and the Center on Disability Studies at the University of Hawaii at Manoa founded, “The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal” (RDS).

    The journal contains research articles, essays, and bibliographies relating to the culture of disability and people with disabilities. It also publishes forums on disability topics brought together by forum editors of international stature. Poetry, short stories, creative essays, photographs, and art work related to disability are also welcome. The journal is published four times a year, and each issue runs approximately 50 pages. The Journal is free online, but a subscription is needed to receive the print version.

    We would like to invite you and people from around the world to subscribe to the journal, and we also welcome correspondence from those who would like to advertise, evaluate manuscripts, serve as anonymous peer reviewers, and contribute manuscripts. The Journal is open to all perspectives, approaches, views, and paradigms relevant to the study and experience of disability.



    Thank you to Dr. Megan Conway for sending me this call for journal submissions to be posted at We Can Do. Any one wishing to know more about RDS should consult their web site directly at http://www.rds.hawaii.edu/. Inquiries similarly should be directed to the staff of RDS.

    See a sample listing of RDS articles.



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    We Can Do Retrospective: The First 100 Posts (and Then Some)

    Posted on 22 December 2007. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Announcements, Arts, autism, Blind, Call for Papers, Case Studies, Children, Cognitive Impairments, Commonwealth Nations, Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR), Cross-Disability, Deaf, Democratic Participation, Disability Studies, Disaster Planning & Mitigation, East Asia and Central Asia, East Asia Pacific Region, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Education, Education and Training Opportunities, Employment, Events and Conferences, Families, Fellowships & Scholarships, Funding, Guest Blogger, Health, HIV/AIDS, Housing, Human Rights, Immigration, Inclusion, Interpreting, Introduction to "We Can Do", Jobs & Internships, Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Mobility Impariments, Multiple Disabilities, News, Opinion, Opportunities, Policy & Legislation, Poverty, Psychiatric Disabilities, Rehabilitation, Remittances, Reports, Resources, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region, technology, Violence, Volunteer Opportunities, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    Skip introduction, go straight to the Table of Contents

    If you’re new to We Can Do, what interesting information, news, or resources might you have overlooked from the past few months? Although some older items may no longer be interesting, others may still be relevant and helpful a year or three from now. This post can help guide you through the first 100-plus posts at this blog. You can click from the table of contents below to any section of this page that interests you–and then another click on “table of contents” can take you back to the contents, or “top of this page” takes you back to this introduction.

    Top of this page


    Table of Contents

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    About We Can Do

    To learn more about the purpose of We Can Do, see About We Can Do. For more on its guiding philosophy, go to Why We Can Do.

    Thinking about submitting your own written materials, job posts, conference announcements, or resources to We Can Do? Check the Wish list for written materials and resources.

    Want to receive an alert in email when a new post goes up at We Can Do? You can Subscribe to We Can Do for free.

    I changed the organization and appearance of We Can Do in early October to its present format.

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    The Five Most Popular We Can Do posts

    The five listed here are the ones that have attracted the most “page views” since We Can Do began in late July. You may notice that not all of these are featured in the 10 “most popular posts” listed in the right-hand navigation bar. That’s because the navigation bar only lists posts that have received a lot of traffic very recently (I think within the past few days; its done automatically by wordpress so I’m not sure how it works). But here I’m listing the five that have the highest TOTAL page views.

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    The Five Most Under-Rated We Can Do posts

    Are these posts really under-rated? You’ll have to read them and decide for yourself. But in choosing these five, I used two criteria: 1. These are posts that have received fewer than 100 visitors–sometimes far fewer. 2. These are posts that I think could be helpful or interesting to readers and maybe deserve more attention than they have gotten. These are in no particular order:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Finding Practical Resources and Case Studies or Helpful Organizations

    Finding organizations; Resources for inclusive development; Human rights resources; Case studies; Other helpful resources

    Finding organizations
    Mainstream international development agencies sometimes say that they don’t know how to find people with disabilities, or their representative organizations, in the developing countries where they work. Reviewing the July post entitled Finding Local Disability Organizations may help point you in the right direction. Also see Disability Organizations in Afghanistan, Asia, Kenya, Uganda.

    Disabled People’s Organizations (DPOs) sometimes aren’t sure where to find mainstream development organizations and resources that might be willing to collaborate with them.

    There is an international network of organizations for families of people with Rubinstein Taybi Syndrome.

    Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Resources for Inclusive Development
    Both disability advocates and mainstream development organizations want to ensure that people with disabilities are not left behind when countries and organizations fight poverty or improve public health, education, water, and other services. But it can be a challenge to figure out how to make projects and government policies more inclusive. The following resources can help:

    Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Resources on the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
    By now, you may be aware that a global movement is taking place to ratify the international disability rights treaty, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Many relevant resources are now being produced in relation to the CRPD, some of which have been posted or featured here at We Can Do:

  • Read the CRPD “translated” into plain English.
  • UNICEF has developed a child-friendly version of the CRPD to help children understand disability rights
  • Disabled People International offers two toolkits on ratifying and implementing the CRPD for disability advocates who want to help ensure that all disabled people have their human rights recognized.
  • A handbook on disability rights targeted at parliamentarians can help parliamentarians, people who work in close contact with government agencies, and disability advocates in general, better understand the CRPD.
  • The United Nations’ new web site, UN Enable, is one of the best, and most official, places to find information on the CRPD.
  • Handicap International has produced its own Teaching Kit on the CRPD.
  • The International Disability Equality Agency (IDEA) has issued Equalize It! A Manifesto for Disability Equality in Development Cooperation that expresses their position on how to ensure disability equality in the international development field.
  • Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Case Studies
    Reviewing case studies of projects implemented elsewhere can be a valuable source of ideas that could help you figure out how to run or implement your own projects. I would love to post many more best-practice and failed-practice case studies than I have available right now. If you think you have something worth sharing, please check my Wish List of Written Materials and Resource and contact me at ashettle [at] patriot.net.

    But for now, here are two case studies:

    Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Other Helpful Resources

    Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Finding Useful Sources of Information and Research

    Finding academic research, papers, resources, or statistics
    Looking for academic research and academic papers; resources that can be used by people working in the field; or sources of statistics? Some of the following posts may be helpful:

    Information on people with disabilities
    Interested in learning about the living conditions of people with disabilities in specific nations, or in specific thematic areas? Some of the following may be of interest:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Funding Sources

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Academic Papers

    We Can Do has published, or re-published, academic papers, or linked to same, on a range of subjects, including:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    News

    September 2007; October 2007; November 2007; Early December 2007

    September 2007
    At one point in September, the international disability community prematurely thought we might be On the Verge of Making History by ratifying the disability rights community.

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    October 2007

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    November 2007

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Early December 2007

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Opinion Pieces

    So far, the opinion pieces here are all by me. But I would like for We Can Do to be host to an active exchange of ideas and differing perspectives. If you have a strong opinion about something, please consider submitting it. Yes, that includes opinions that disagree with mine! Consult the Wish list for written materials and resources for ideas of the kinds of topics I’m trying to cover at We Can Do.

    Meanwhile, here are a few of my own opinion pieces:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Call for Papers (for Conferences, Journals, Other)

    You might be just now starting your academic career as an undergraduate or graduate student. Or perhaps you have been doing quantitative or qualitative research, or writing policy analysis, or case studies, or social analysis, for years. Either way, if you’re looking for opportunities to present, publish, or otherwise disseminate your papers or run a workshop, then check out these upcoming or ongoing opportunities:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    International Conferences and Events

    Looking for a conference to attend? Here are a few upcoming events:
    January 2008; February 2008; March 2008; April 2008; May 2008; August 2008; September 2008; November 2008

    January 2008
    The South Asian Conference on Autism is being held in New Delhi, India in January 2008.

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    February 2008

  • The Disabilities Initiatives in Development Seminar, also in Bangladesh also in February 2008.
  • One for all: Persons with Disabilities Initiative in Development, again in Bangladesh in February 2008.
  • The International Centre for Sign Languages and Deaf Studies at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, UK is holding a conference on sign language research in the UK in February 2008.
  • A conference on the deaf community, sign languages, social issues, civil rights, and creativity will be held on the campus of Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, USA.
  • The Techshare India 2008 Conference on accessibility will be held in New Delhi, India, in February 2008.
  • Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    March 2008
    The 8th annual meeting of the Gulf Disability Society will meet in United Arab Emirates in March 2008.

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    April 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    May 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    August 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    September 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    November 2008
    The Association on Women’s Rights in Development (AWID)’s International Forum on Women’s Rights and Development will be held in Cape Town, South Africa in November 2008. A call for proposals is open until January 28, 2008.

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Jobs, Internships, Volunteer Opportunities

    We Can Do will probably never be a comprehensive job-board. Serious job, internship, or volunteer placement hunters will want to explore other means of finding opportunities. For example, jobs, internships, and volunteer opportunities in the international field generally, or in the disability field generally, can sometimes be found at www.idealist.org. But I do occasionally happen to come across a job announcement. Here are a few that may still be open to applications:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Education and Training Opportunities

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Opportunities

    Missed call for papers; Missed training opportunities; Missed job, internship, and volunteer opportunities; Missed events and conferences

    Some of the material I post at We Can Do is time-sensitive material. That means the conferences announced here have come and gone; job posts have been filled; and deadlines are over. So, if it’s too late for you to do anything about any of the following announcements, then why bother listing them? First, some conference organizers issue compilations of papers and presentations or other interesting materials after their event is over. If a topic interests you, it may be worth communicating with event organizers to see if any follow-up publications are available. Second, organizations that offer one conference, job opportunity, call for papers, etc., may offer something similar in the future. Many conferences, for example, meet every one, two, three, or four years. Monitoring, joining, or communicating with organizations of interest to you could help ensure that you learn about the next opportunity in time to plan for it.

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Call for Papers
    The German Journal for Disability and Development called for papers on art and disabilities to be submitted by the end of November 2007.

    Also browse through the listing of upcoming conferences and missed conferences.

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Training Opportunities

    In October 2007, the International Labour Organisation had a training course for professionals from developing countries.

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Jobs, Internships, and Volunteer Opportunities
    Remember that it is too late to apply for these specific opportunities. These are listed here in case you want to check out the sponsoring organizations for future opportunities like these:

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Event and Conference Opportunities

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    What’s Next for We Can Do?

    I am not yet satisfied with We Can Do. I still see many gaps that I want to repair. I want to find, and post, more materials of a pragmatic nature. By which I mean, material that people in the field can put to immediate use in improving the lives of disabled people in developing countries. If you think you can help me locate helpful materials, please review my Wish list for written materials and resources and contact me.

    I also want to reach more development professionals at mainstream development organizations and more employees and volunteers at international disability organizations. And I want to reach more small DPOs and individual advocates in more developing countries. The knowledge shared at We Can Do cannot help until it is brought to people with disabilities living in poverty in developing countries. That “final mile” can only be bridged by readers like YOU.

    If you want to help, I hope you will consider telling your colleagues and contacts about We Can Do. If you run a web site or a blog, please consider linking to We Can Do at https://wecando.wordpress.com. If you have the skills, the time, and the commitment to launch a We Can Do mirror site translation into some other language, please talk to me (leave a comment or email me at ashettle [at] patriot.net). And please do feel free to print out the more helpful We Can Do posts to share with people you know in developing countries who do not have easy access to the Internet.

    For those of you who like numbers: We Can Do had 285 page views in July; 851 in August; 1305 in September; 2936 in October; 4862 in November; and more than 5100 in the first three weeks of December. And who is responsible for making these numbers happen? Why—you, of course! So, thank you for visiting We Can Do.

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

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    Please Submit YOUR Materials to We Can Do

    Posted on 7 November 2007. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Announcements, Arts, Blind, Call for Papers, Case Studies, Children, Cognitive Impairments, Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR), Cross-Disability, Deaf, Disability Studies, Disaster Planning & Mitigation, East Asia Pacific Region, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Education, Employment, Events and Conferences, Families, Funding, Guest Blogger, HIV/AIDS, Housing, Human Rights, Immigration, Interpreting, Introduction to "We Can Do", Jobs & Internships, Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Mobility Impariments, Multiple Disabilities, News, Opinion, Opportunities, Policy & Legislation, Poverty, Psychiatric Disabilities, Rehabilitation, Remittances, Resources, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region, Uncategorized, Violence, Volunteer Opportunities, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    Currently, We Can Do gathers news; announcements; academic papers; case studies; opinion pieces; information about resources; and other materials of interest to disabled advocates and international development professionals from a wide range of sources. In addition to these, from time to time, I write fresh content of my own.

    I also hope to be able to depend heavily on YOU–We Can Do readers–for some of the best, most interesting, and helpful materials. Examples of materials that would interest me include, but are not limited to: “best practice” case studies; “failed practice” case studies; checklists; fundraising advice or resources; other pragmatic resources; academic papers or reports; student projects; press releases; opinion pieces; announcements; and more. For more detail, please click on “Wish List for Written Materials and Resources” at the top navigation bar.

    If you can assist with my current top priority, or with any of the other items in my “wish list”, then PLEASE GET IN TOUCH. Email me at ashettle at patriot dot net or leave a short note in the comment area below and I’ll contact you.

    Current Top Priority for We Can Do

    Are you from Croatia, Cuba, Gabon, Hungary, India, Jamaica, or Panama? If so, were you involved with the movement to persuade your government to sign and ratify the international Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)? If so PLEASE CONTACT ME (ashettle at patriot dot net, or leave a comment below with your email address).

    I want to interview people involved with these movements (via email) so I can write a story describing what strategies you used; any barriers you faced along the way; how you overcame these barriers; any mistakes you made, how you corrected them, and how other countries can avoid them; what activities or techniques you think were the most critical to your success; and so forth. Sharing this type of information at We Can Do–and elsewhere–could be immensely helpful to disability movements in other countries that are working toward the same goals.

    My primary written language is English, pero puedo escribir y leer, mas o menos, en espanol tambien. (Lo siento para la mala ortografia–no se como crear acentos en WordPress.) Once we are in contact, I will probably have many questions for you–and follow up questions after that!

    Thank you for helping make We Can Do become a strong, good-quality resource for people with disabilities in developing countries and the people who are working hard to meet their needs.

    Edited to Add: I do not post my full email address because any recognizable email address posted on the web then immediately becomes the target of “spam harvesters” and starts receiving tons of unwanted, unsolicited commercial emails. But I spelled it out above and spell it out again here. But this time I’m amplifying it because I realize that not all people have learned how to parse spelled out email addresses:

    My username is: ashettle

    Every email address has an @ at sign @ between the user name and the domain name, thus ashettle@

    My email domain is patriot.net

    Put it all together and you have my email address.

    Or if that is still too confusing–or if it’s just easier for you–then feel free to leave a note below (with your email address in the area provided for it) and I’ll get in touch.


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    Disability Movement from Charity to Empowerment, by Kishor Bhanushali

    Posted on 22 October 2007. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Disability Studies, Guest Blogger, South Asian Region | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    Probably every wheelchair rider–or at least, the wheelchair users who I know–have had the experience of strangers in the street adamantly insisting on giving them their loose change. Even well-dressed people in three-piece pin-striped suits on their way to white collar jobs in industrialized countries have had strangers simply assume that they must be panhandling–and that they would be thrilled to receive a piece of currency so tiny that it can purchase absolutely nothing in the local economy.

    This event is so ordinary and common in their lives that some disabled people may not even think to mention it until and unless an astonished companion witnesses an incident and asks about it. The attitude reflected by these would-be benefactors can be instantly be recognized by the familiar as the “charity model” of disability described further below in Kishor Bhanushali’s essay.

    For someone new to disability studies, certain terms can seem as bewildering as international development jargon can seem to a grassroots disability (or Deaf/deaf) rights advocate. Concepts such as the distinctions between the “social model” and the “medical model” of disability can initially seem remote from the concerns of someone unfamiliar with disabilities struggling to ensure that disabled people have equal access to the mainstream transportation infrastructure program, or to the HIV/AIDS education outreach project, that they are trying to implement.

    But the attitudes and perspectives of non-disabled people toward people with disabilities can, and do, have a profound impact on our daily lives. Even for a disabled person who has never before heard the phrase “moral model” or “human rights model,” the descriptions of the real-world attitudes upon which these phrases are based are intimately familiar and highly relevant to our lives. They are familiar because we confront them, for better or for worse, in the people we meet–including in our families. And they are relevant because when certain attitudes are pervasive throughout all society, they directly and pragmatically affect what services or human rights are–or are not–available to us.

    This holds as true in developing nations as it does in rich nations. Disabled people have unequal access to resources in their environment not only because they are disabled, or because their country is poor, but also because people and programs following the moral, medical, or charity models (rather than the social or human rights models) may create barriers that prevent their equal participation in society.

    Whether or not you knew it, you are already operating from the perspectives and attitudes described in at least one of the existing “disability models,” as described in the essay below and elsewhere. And so are the programs that you run, support, or work for–even if these projects are not intended to be targeted specifically at people with disabilities. Being aware of the various models and the distinctions among them can be a helpful start in evaluating whether your program is productive and empowering for disabled people–or if your program, entirely without your intent or will, reinforces barriers already present in their environment.

    The author of the paper presented here, Kishor Bhanushali, recently circulated it on the email distribution list for the Global Partnership on Disability and Development (GPDD). He was kind enough to grant permission for it to be posted at We Can Do. I wanted to post this paper so that readers new to the various disability models can receive a brief introduction here. This paper also shares Bhanushali’s observations of the status of people with disabilities in Indian society.

    Kishor Bhanushali is currently working on a book titled “Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities” that will contain articles on various rehabilitation strategies. He invites submissions. Interested parties should contact him directly.


    Changing Face of Disability Movement: From Charity to Empowerment

    By Kishor Bhanushali
    Faculty Member – ICFAI Business School
    Ahmedabad
    kishorkisu@rediffmail.com

    National Seminar On
    “Revisiting Social Work in the field of Health – A Journey from Welfare to Empowerment-
    (20-21 February 2007)

    Organised by Faculty of Social Work,
    The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda Vadodara

    Over 600 million people, or approximately 10 per cent of the world’s population, have a disability of one form or another. Over two thirds of them live in developing countries. Only 2 per cent of disabled children in the developing world receive any education or rehabilitation. The link between disability and poverty and social exclusion is direct and strong throughout the world” – Human Rights and Disability (United Nations)

    Introduction:
    The problem of disability and movement for disability is as old as mankind. Holy epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata have reference the issue of disability in terms of negative characters of Mnthara, Dhutrastra, and Sakuni. This has created negative impact on the mindset of people about persons with disabilities. During ancient times, persons with disabilities were seen as sin or punishment by God for wrong thing done in last life. This perception has changed over a period of time and persons with disabilities were looked at with pity and charity. But today they have proved themselves as normal citizens. It has been proved that disability lies in the social system and not within persons with disabilities themselves. They need their rights and equal opportunities instead of pity and charity. Disability movement worldwide and within India has a greater role to play in this transformation. This needs to strengthen further. Paper focuses on the changing face of disability movement from looking at persons with disability as a sin to charity mode and towards giving them their rights and equal opportunities. Attempt here is on understand the path of disability movement and its relevance for Indian social work. This will provide an important input for voluntary organizations, government, and the social work professionals working in the area of disability.

    Disability Models:
    Different people conceptualize the phenomenon of disability differently. Accordingly each person will have different meaning for the term disability and rehabilitation strategy to be followed. Accordingly conceptions regarding disability have undergone changes from time to time, from place to place, and from person to person. The meaning of disability for a doctor is different from that of psychologist, economists, and social worker. Accordingly we have different models of disability evolving from disability movement worldwide.

    1. Moral Model
    The oldest model of disability was moral model. Under this model person with disability were seen as sin. Disability was considered as punishment from God for the wrong Karma done in the past. Thus persons with disabilities were treated as alien. They have no right to live in the mainstream society. They are not entitled for any right to education, social life and employment available other members of the society. They themselves are responsible for what they are. The family with disabled member was seen with suspicious. To avoid this disabled member were generally hided by their family. Neither government nor society was concerned with the problems faced by them.

    2. Charity Model
    Charity model is driven largely by the emotive appeals of charity. This model treats people with disabilities as helpless victims needing care and protections. This model relies heavily on the charity and benevolence rather than justice and equality. This model accepts the act of exclusion of persons with disabilities from social arrangements and services in public domain. Charity model justifies the exclusion of persons with disabilities from the mainstream education and employment. Entitlement rights are substituted by relief measures creating an army of powerless individuals, without any control or bargaining power, depending either on the state allocated fund or benevolent individuals. This model asks for social support mechanism for the benefit of person with disability. Initial efforts of the government and individuals were based on this model. Government was allocating large chunk of fund for the welfare of persons with disabilities as direct benefit or support to voluntary organizations. At the same time army of non-governmental organisations working for the benefit of persons with disabilities also relies on the donations and government grants.

    3. Medical Model
    Medical model of disability is based on the postulate that the problems and difficulties experienced by person with disabilities are directly related to their physical, sensory or intellectual impairments. This model defines disability in the clinical framework as diseases state, thus providing for major role for the medical and paramedical professionals to cure this problems in such a way as to make them as normal as possible. Medical model support the postulate that persons with disabilities are biologically and psychologically inferior to other able bodied counterparts. So they are not treated as fully human bacause they lack the competence to decide for themselves. This model reduces disability to impairment and sought to locate it within the body or mind of the individual while the power to define, control and treat disabled individual was located within the medical and paramedical professionals. This model restricts the rehabilitation efforts to medical treatment in terms of protection and cure.

    4. Social Model
    In contrast to medical model, which locates disability within the person with disabilities, social model postulates that persons is disabled because of architectural, attitudinal and social barriers created by the society. The social model presents disability as a consequence of oppression, prejudice and discrimination by the society against disabled people. It is the society, which constructs economic, social, health, architectural, legal, and cultural and other barriers in order to deliberately prevent people with impairments enjoying full benefits of social life. The social model shifts the emphasis from a disabled individual to the society and its disabling attitudes and environment. People who believe on social model are of he view that handicap is made and not acquired. So the solution lies in social management by all necessary environmental modification.

    5. Economic Model
    The economic model tries to establish the linkages between the individual and society in term of their contribution to productive capabilities of the society. The emphasis here is on health related limitations on the amount and kind of work performed by person with disabilities. This approach suggests that the employment problems of person with disabilities stem from faulty economic system and deficiencies on the part of such disadvantage individuals. The vocational rehabilitation programmes or income generation programmes are principle solutions to the problems faced by persons with disabilities. Existing policies plays a greater role in condemning the disabled man and women to a life of perpetual dependency thus providing low pay work ad limited opportunities for all around development. Unlike other models, economic model suggest that the modifications in the persons in the form of education, training and employability, rather than changing the environment and worksite changes or changes in the perception of employees is the most desirable means of fulfilling the social and economic needs of the disadvantages strata of the society.

    6. Human Rights Model
    Over the past two decades, dramatic shift in the perspective has taken place from an approach motivated by charity towards persons with disabilities to one based on rights. Disability is positioned as an important dimension of human culture by human rights model. According to human rights model all human beings irrespective of their disabilities have certain rights, which are unchallengeable. By emphasizing that the disabled are equally entitled to rights as others, this model builds upon the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948, according to which, ‘all human beings are born free and equal in rights and dignity”. This model emphasis on viewing persons with disabilities as subjects and not as objects thus locating the problem outside the disabled persons and addresses the manners in which the economic and social processes accommodate the differences of disability or not, as the case may be.

    Indian Scenario
    In all countries of the world, persons with disabilities are the largest minority group starved of services and facilities available to their non-disabled counterparts. As a result they are least nourished, least healthy, least educated and least employed. They are subject to the long history of neglect, isolation, poverty, deprivation, charity and pity. The situation of persons with disabilities in India is not significantly different. The responsibility of care of persons with disabilities is generally left to their families and few institutions managed by voluntary organisations and government. Disabled in India is mostly ignored by the society because they do not have economic, political or media power. Census of India, for the first time, enumerated persons with disabilities in 2001 according to which more than 2 crore people are facing the problem of disability. In comparison to United Nations figure of 10 percent, Census of India figure is very small. The reason lies in the different approaches and definitions. Within India results of National Sample Survey Organisation and Census of India shows contradictory results. This speaks about the lack of sensitivity on the issue of disability.

    The legal framework adequately addresses the issue of disability. Constitution of India, guarantees a right of justice, liberty of thought, expression, belief and worship and equality of status and of opportunities for all citizens including person with disabilities. Apart form constitutional provisions the collective struggle of all disabled and their advocates resulted in ‘Persons with Disabilities (Equal opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Bill, passed in 1995. This Act is a comprehensive and farreaching legislation with promise of liberating mankind of its prejudices and of removing barriers that have crippled the disabled for centuries. By granting full equality, independence and freedom, act has opened doors to people with disabilities so that the can become an integral part of the mainstream society. Apart from PWD Act, we have other legislative provisions like The Mental Health Act 1987, Rehabilitation Council of India Act 1992, and The National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disability Act 1999 are also available to safeguard the interest of person with Disabilities. Government of Gujarat has passed Gujarat Physically Handicapped Persons (Employment in Factories) Act 1982 which provide for the reservation for person with disabilities in private sector factories. The fruits of these legislative provisions are not percolating to persons with disabilities because of lack of awareness. Even voluntary organisations working for persons with disabilities themselves are not aware about the legal provisions. Overlapping of functions of judicial machinery makes things more complicated.

    Large numbers of voluntary organisations are operating in India, especially for the welfare of person with disabilities. Sincere and dedicated efforts on the part of government and voluntary organisations have resulted in high level of literacy among person with disabilities and increased awareness among persons with disabilities and their parents about their rights and capabilities. But the dark side is that, many of voluntary organisations believe on charity model. These organisations are not professionally managed. They are depending on government and other donors for financial support. Only a few of them are providing vocational training and employment services for person with disabilities. Vocational trainings provided by voluntary organisations are not professionally designed lacking in marketability and employability. So even after getting training person with disabilities are not suitably employed. Secondly more than 75 percent of persons with disabilities are living in rural areas where as voluntary efforts are concentrated in urban locations. Very few organisations are working for rural disabled. Voluntary organisations have to extend their operations in rural areas as well.

    Employment is really a problem for person with disabilities. Unemployment rate among person with disabilities is more than double the unemployment rate among their nondisabled counterparts. The reasons lie in the suspicions of the employers who believe on medical model and consider them inferior to their non-disabled counterparts. They prefer to donate for the welfare of persons with disabilities rather than giving them employment opportunities. Physical and mental impairment is more visible to them compared to their abilities. A Three percent reservation as provided by PWD Act has remained on paper even after more than a decade of passage of legislation.

    The policies and schemes of government are guided by medical model rather than human rights model. Major efforts on the part of government are limited to physical rehabilitation in the form of preventive action, provision for aids and appliances etc. Efforts in the direction of human rights model has remain on paper because of the ignorance on the part of persons with disabilities, and voluntary organisations.

    Conclusion:
    Disability movement in India has succeeded in changing the approach towards disability from moral model to charity model but limited has been achieved in the direction of human rights model. Collective efforts on the part of person with disabilities, their advocates, voluntary organisations, government and society at large are required to create real world where abilities and disabilities are not seen on the basis of physical or mental impairment but disability is seen as diverse abilities.

    References:
    1. The Census of India 2001, Government of India
    2. The National Sample Survey Organisations, 58 th Round 2002, Government of India
    3. Disability Status in India: Retrospect and Prospects, by G.N. Karna, Gyan Publishing house, New Delhi.
    4. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948, United Nations
    5. Persons with Disabilities (Equal opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act 1995, Government of India
    6. The Mental Health Act 1987, Government of India
    7. Rehabilitation Council of India Act 1992, Government of India
    8. The National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disability Act 1999, Government of India.
    9. National Human Rights Commission, www.nhrc.nic.in
    10. Identifying Disability Issues Related to Poverty Reduction: India Country Study, Asian Development Bank


    I will likely post more materials (or links to same) on the various models of disability, and how they relate to the international development field, in future blog posts at We Can Do. But for now, let me quickly link to two essays that discuss particularly the “medical” and “social” models in further depth. Both are posted by a British blogger who dubs herself “Lady Bracknell”: “Impairment versus disability” and “The social model of disability.”

    Please note that Lady Bracknell’s use of terminology such as the distinction between “disabled” and “impaired” is a very British usage and differs from the usage of similar terminology by writers from other countries.


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