The Importance of Diversity in Disability
It may not seem like it, but disability and diversity are two closely related concepts. Disability exists in most every ethnic community around the world. On the other end of the spectrum, there are so many disabilities and a whole range of ability levels. Thus, it’s worth exploring why diversity is important in the disability community.
Diversity can take many forms: religion, culture, race, gender, sexual orientation, age, socioeconomic background, etc. Diversity can also encompass ability level, as stated above. Diversity allows people of different backgrounds to learn from each other because of the different experiences each party has had. In a more diverse world, people tend to be more accepting and understanding of others in their situations. This can easily be extrapolated to apply to the disability community. With diversity, you get a whole range of perspectives, which helps you to evaluate the different needs/preferences of each person. Lastly, diversity teaches patience and understanding. It helps you become a better member of society because your prejudices are greatly diminished when you can better understand others.
Although the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) passed in 1990, individuals with disabilities still face discrimination in the workplace. Similarly, some firms do still discriminate based on ethnicity, race, gender, and other factors. As a result, “People with disabilities from culturally diverse backgrounds experience twice the discrimination experienced by non-disabled people in the minority community. Both disability and race complicate the situation.” (Disabled World). According to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it is illegal to discriminate in the workplace when hiring, terminating, promoting, and all other facets.
At the Independent Living Center of the North Shore and Cape Ann, we strive to advocate for the rights of disabled individuals. We recognize the correlation between disability and diversity, and we work to foster healthy relations between people of all walks of life. Remember ILCNSCA as your go-to for disability advocacy and independent living.
Categorized in: Advocacy
This post was written by Sperling