What is the power of a few words?
On 20th April, our Prime Minister said he was blessed to have children without disability.
Since saying this, he has apologised for what he said.
Lots of people are upset by what he has said, and here is my opinion on this.
One of the best things about being disabled is being a part of the disabled community
The disabled community has lots of different views on:
- What it is to be disabled,
- What it is like to be disabled, and
- How we view and experience our disabilities.
I believe I would not be where I am and doing what I do without my disability.
I would not have encountered the challenges I have without my disability.
There is person-first language.
An example of this is a person with a disability.
Some people prefer this so they are seen as more than their disability.
There is identity-first language.
An example of this is a disabled person.
Some people prefer this because they think their disability is key to who they are. .
How we view our disabilities are different, and are personal to us.
Our experiences and where we live may contribute to how we view our disability.
We have to remember the Prime Minister’s comments were not meant to be offensive
However comments like this can make people with a disability feel less human.
Here are some worrying issues within the disability community:
It is estimated that Autistic children are three times more likely to die by drowning compared to children without Autism.
People with Intellectual Disability have an average life expectancy of 54 years. This is 26 years less than those without Intellectual Disability
Women and girls with a disability experience more violence against them.
Mainstream systems often fail those with disabilities, especially Autistic children.
The Prime Minister’s comments may not have been intended to upset anyone.
It is typical of what those in the disabled community face daily.
These kinds of attitudes shape the experience people with disabilities have.
We must do better to change the opinion of people with disabilities.
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