An analysis of the importance to distinguish between different categories of disabled people

The Experience of Disability Although it is subject to dispute and qualification, the distinction between biological impairment and social limitation is relevant to many normative and policy issues, especially those concerning the choice between measures that modify the disabled individual or alter his environment.

The alternative is to keep quiet and forgo needed assistance, which carries other costs, such as the stress of keeping a secret or trying to decide if a particular disclosure is safe Schneider and Conrad, ; Davis, The US-based literature focused on the Americans with Disabilities Actwhile in the UK the legal rights of disabled people were enshrined in the Disability Discrimination Act which was later incorporated into the Equality Act This experience is similar to those not only of other stigmatized minorities, such as African-Americans or LGBTs, but of people with atypical characteristics who may not form a distinct political or cultural minority but are nonetheless constantly reminded of their difference.

types of disability pdf

The most discussed is overt stigmatization and discrimination: being treated as a social outcast, losing out on jobs, friends, or partners, because other people do not want to interact with a person with a disability, or enduring grossly inadequate accommodation because reasonable accommodation is thought too costly or troublesome.

Although the ICF seems complex in terms of the different ways in which it can be translated, the ways in which people use the ICF can be creative. Magee, B.

what is disability

Most developments continue to focus on screening for disability or its measurement within population groups. Wachbroit, and J. On the other hand, diseases are generally classified as impairments, even though they are rarely permanent or static conditions.

An analysis of the importance to distinguish between different categories of disabled people

In acknowledging the legitimacy of a broadened discourse on disability in terms of rights, inclusiveness and participation, the ICF has enlarged the understanding of the nature of disablement, emphasising the crucial importance of context of the social and physical environment. Ho eds. Why doesn't the man who is blind let it go when a cab driver won't take his money? However, the links between social justice theories and inequalities literature on poverty, although influential, have remained undertheorised, and the practical impact on the operationalisation of more evaluative methodologies used in public health remains small. Asch, A. Despite having a long history, the human rights model has only recently assumed analytical importance in the context of disability. Those who accept a social model of disability regard the association between disability and well-being as highly contingent, mediated by a variety of environmental and social factors. On the other hand, diseases are generally classified as impairments, even though they are rarely permanent or static conditions. Beaudry, J. It focuses on disease but uses a threefold classification between impairment, disability and handicap, as follows: Impairment: any loss or abnormality of psychological, physiological or anatomical structure or function. Two common features stand out in most official definitions of disability, such as those in the World Health Organization ; , the U. From the early s onwards, for example, we see more analysis in terms of the intersectionality of disability such as gender, age, ethnicity and socioeconomic class.

The medical model is rarely defended but often adopted unreflectively by health care professionals, bioethicists, and philosophers who ignore or underestimate the contribution of social and other environmental factors to the limitations faced by people with disabilities.

The discrimination stressed by the minority group model generally leads to, and is expressed in, the societal failure to accommodate people with various differences.

Social model of disability

Bickenbach Participation and personal factors are especially criticised for being undertheorised. Johnson, M. If one goal of social policy is to remove discrimination and its enduring disadvantages, another is to encompass the full range of human variation in the design of the physical environment and social practices. Resolving these tensions is likely to be an important consideration when assessing the usefulness or otherwise of capability approaches in engaging with more critical rethinking of disabling experiences. More moderate versions of the social model maintain the emphasis on social causes while insisting on the interactive character of disability e. The second type of disability experience, then, is of attitudinal barriers to ordinary activity that are facts of life for people with disabilities. Beaudry, J. The UK is a signatory to the convention and its optional protocol, which it ratified in Potential weaknesses Although the ICF is an attempt to transcend the medical model, it struggles to escape fully from its associations with it. For Rioux and Heath, quoting Quinn et al. Both groups might benefit as a result. Impairment is seen as indicative of an underlying physical abnormality pathology , located within the individual body, and medical treatment, wherever possible, should be directed at the underlying pathology in an attempt to correct or prevent the abnormality. The human rights model: accords fundamental human rights to persons with disabilities. The Act also established equality of opportunity and placed a public service duty on public sector organisations to foster good relationships between groups both with and without protected characteristics. Language, social conventions, and many aspects of life have changed because men listened to women's accounts of how seemingly innocuous acts felt, and of why those acts held not-so-innocuous implications for their self-realization and social participation.

In claiming that the experience of stigma unites disabled people, we must be careful to acknowledge those differences.

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Disability: Definitions, Models, Experience (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)