Distrust, Disrespect, Discrimination
My latest round up of news from around the world on the state of Human Rights for citizens with disabilities seems to to chock full of stories about the ways in which these rights are being trampled on.
Let me take you first to Texas where 18 year old Ryan who has Autism and his family have taken his school to court to try to secure the supports he needs to be successful. The school contends that while Ryan has “Medical Autism he does not have Educational Autism” which makes accommodation in school unnecessary. I’m sorry WHAT????Rhetoric and justification knows no bounds folks. Check out how this families concerns are being dealt with in the Texas legal system.
Then there is a disturbing case, reported by ABC news. This piece investigates the case of of an 8 year old little girl who has been banned from her community Girl Scout Troop, because she has Autism. While her parents and leaders alike admit that she posed no threat to herself of others during the meeting, ugly stereo-types and inaccurate stigma attached to the label of Autism will keep her from participating in this neighbourhood club dedicated to diversity, service and community development.
Seems to me, the folks that run this troupe need to read the law of Scouting a few more times.
I will do my best to be
Honest and Fair,
Friendly and Helpful,
Considerate and Caring,
Courageous and Strong, and
Responsible for what I say and do,
respect myself and others,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place, and
be a sister to every Girl Scout
Hmmm….Not so much
There are National Laws, United Nations Articles, and Human Rights Tribunals in place to ensure that citizens with disabilities have free and equitable access to medical care, community clubs, and equal protection under the law (and thank-goodness there are). In this writers humble opinion, what might be most compelling and effective in these kinds of situations, would be the outcry and indignation of families and citizens who DO NOT have (or love someone with) a disability. If you think that your community, school, scout group, curling club, neighbourhood or workplace is better because of the participation of citizens with disabilities. Speak out, talk about it at every opportunity! This is not a movement about disability. This is a social imperative that should we ignore our role as allies and victims regarding this kind of injustice, we do so at our own peril.
How DARE anyone try and keep people with disabilities out of MY children’s lives, OUR experience as a family, and MY community.
I know how much richer our experiences in this world are because of diversity and inclusion
No more I tell you. Not on my watch.