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Empowering Women with Disabilities : moving from charity to right based model

Humanity & Inclusion
English
2020

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HI Pakistan has recently completed a UN Women funded project ”Empowering women with disabilities (EWwD)” focusing on the social and economic empowerment of the women with disabilities. The project was implemented at Islamabad capital territory (ICT), Peshawar, Nowshera and Karachi. This project has directly benefited more than 600 women with disabilities , whereas about 30 DPOs and a number of public private departments / institutions have also been engaged and benefitted.

 

HI Pakistan collected the stories of project beneficiaries and published to highlight the impact of the project and to integrate the lesson learnt in program cycle management.

Representation and methods of normalisation: Narratives of disability within a South African tertiary institution

DEVAR, Teagan
BOBAT, Shaida
REUBEN, Shanya
English
July 2020

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Background: The manner in which disability is understood influences how individuals within a society, its institutions, policies and structures are able to accommodate and support people with disabilities (PWD) (Kaplan 2000). Understanding how students with disabilities (SWD) within a higher education context perceive and experience disability as well as how key players, namely, lecturers and disability unit (DU) staff, who influence that experience, is important in further shaping policy and providing a truly inclusive environment for all within HEIs.

 

Objectives: The study aimed to examine the narratives of disability among SWD, lecturers and the DU within a tertiary institution, with a view to better understand their experiences and required initiatives to address the challenges of disability within a higher tertiary institution.

 

Method: The study drew on three theoretical frameworks: social constructionism, feminist disability theory and the Foucauldian perspective. Data for the study were collected through in-depth semi-structured interviews with 12 SWD, seven members of staff from the institution’s DU and five lecturers from within the School of Applied Human Sciences. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.

 

Results: The findings suggested that in spite of both facilitating and positive representations of disability, the dominant representation of disability was perceived as challenging and as a result, disempowering. Students with disabilities were found to adapt, and consequently modify their behaviour by disassociating from their disability in order to fit in.

 

Conclusion: The study highlights the need for creating spaces and engagement within an HEI context that both challenge negative discourses of disability, and at the same time, promote positive representations of disability.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020

The social and human rights models of disability: towards a complementarity thesis

LAWSON, Anna
BECKETT, Angharad E
English
2020

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This article aims to reorient thinking about the relationship between the long-standing social model of disability and the rapidly emerging human rights model. In particular, it contests the influential view that the latter develops and improves upon the former (the improvement thesis) and argues instead that the two models are complementary (the complementarity thesis). The article begins with a discursive analysis of relevant documents to investigate how each of the two models has been used in the crafting and monitoring of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This highlights the increasing importance of the human rights model in this policy context. It also provides examples of the operation of the two models which inform the remainder of the discussion. We then critique the comparisons between the models which underpin the improvement thesis; and, drawing on Foucault’s technologies of power and Beckett and Campbell’s ‘oppositional device’ methodology, deepen and develop this comparative analysis. The result, we argue, is that the two models have different subjects and different functions. In the human rights context, their roles are complementary and supportive.

‘Education for All’ under lockdown: the path ahead for inclusion of children with disabilities

NATH, Seema
English
June 2020

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During the COVID-19 pandemic, schools around the world experience extraordinary times and as education moves online, those who have historically faced marginalisation find themselves facing new challenges to access education. The situation is disproportionately affecting those within marginalised communities in India and across the globe. In education, these disadvantages are amplified for learners with disabilities belonging to low socio-economic backgrounds. Lessons to be learned from schools that are incorporating the principles of inclusion and social justice while approaching these challenges are highlighted.

Accelerating Disability Inclusive Formal Employment in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda: What are the Vital Ingredients?

WICKENDEN, Mary
THOMPSON, Stephen
MADER, Philip
BROWN, Simon
ROHWERDER, Brigitte
English
March 2020

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This Working Paper provides an overview of disability as a concept and relevant global treaties and statistics, including evidence of trends and complexities in promoting disability inclusive employment broadly and with some focus on formal employment specifically. We describe the current situation in each of the four focus countries, demonstrating the similarities and differences between them. We then discuss some promising interventions that have been tried, usually on a small scale, in diverse settings, and which may be applicable in our four focus countries (Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda). Finally, we present the potential interventions that will be trialled in the Inclusion Works programme, using an innovation-driven, adaptive management approach.

 

The Inclusion Works programme (2018–2022), funded by the UK Department for International Development, aims to improve employment rates for people with disabilities in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda. 

 

The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the UK government or members of the Inclusion Works consortium.

Being differently abled: Disability through the lens of hierarchy of binaries and Bitso-lebe-ke Seromo

LESHOTA, Paul L
SEFOTHO, Maximus M
English
February 2020

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Background: Despite its acceptability, the term disability has not been able to shirk the sense of incompleteness, lack, deprivation and incapacitation embodied in the prefix ‘dis-’. The current wave of anti-discrimination on disability issues, calls for constant re-examination of the language and the appellations we use in respect of people with disabilities.

 

Objectives: The aim of this study is to subject the term disability to some relevancy litmus test with a view to prevent it from acquiring Lyotard’s ‘grand narrative’ and to propose and argue for the term ‘differently abled’ because of its transformative and anti-discriminatory slant.

 

Method: The study took the form of a literature review using the optic of Derrida’s hierarchy of binaries and the Sesotho proverb, ‘Bitso-lebe-ke seromo’, (A bad name is ominous) to explore the connotations of the term disability as a disenfranchising social construct.

 

Results: Read through the lens of Derrida’s idea of difference, disability as a concept has no inherent meaning and its meaning derives from its being differentiated from other concepts. Viewed through the lens of Bitso-lebe-ke seromo and read in the context of its deep symbolical significance, the term disability holds immense spiritual power.

 

Conclusion: The study concludes that the term disability or disabled is exclusionary, stigmatizing, and anti-transformational. As such it embodies imperfection, incapacitation and inferiority. Not only is it ominous, it places upon people with disability the perpetual mark of unattractiveness. Against this background the term differently abled seems to convey more empowering overtones than the term disability.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020 

Decolonising inclusive education: an example from a research in Colombia

KAMENOPOULOU, Leda
English
2020

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Inclusive education is a concept born in the global North. Research has shown that its relatively recent but widespread adoption by countries in the global South is often done without consideration of the actual needs of these contexts, and by solely focusing on strategies for learners with disabilities. As a result, inclusive education has been criticised as a neo-colonial project in need of renovation. The aim of this article is to show how research can broaden the understanding of inclusive education and make it more relevant to southern contexts. Drawing on an ethnographic research on inclusive education in Colombia, I present some unique examples of vulnerability, but also experiences of belonging in the direst of circumstances. I conclude that in order to decolonise the concept of inclusive education and make its practice sustainable in southern contexts, we need more culturally sensitive research to inform our understanding of these under-researched spaces.

 

Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1

At the Margins of Society: Disability Rights and Inclusion in 1980s Singapore

ZHUANG, Kuansong Victor
English
2020

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A new era focused on the inclusion of disabled people in society has emerged in recent years around the world. The emergence of this particular discourse of inclusion can be traced to the 1980s, when disabled people worldwide gathered in Singapore to form Disabled Peoples’ International (DPI) and adopted a language of the social model of disability to challenge their exclusion in society. This paper examines the responses of disabled people in Singapore in the decade in and around the formation of DPI. As the social model and disability rights took hold in Singapore, disabled people in Singapore began to advocate for their equal participation in society. In mapping some of the contestations in the 1980s, I expose the logics prevailing in society and how disabled people in Singapore argued for their inclusion in society as well as its implications for our understanding of inclusion in Singapore today.

 

Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1

Universal Notions of Development and Disability: Towards Whose Imagined Vision?

RAO, Shridevi
KALYANPUR, Maya
English
2020

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This paper addresses the epistemological dissonance created by the growing movement to impose universal templates of disability and disability-related practices to countries in the Global South and the subsequent erasure of indigenous understandings of disability. Underlying this dissonance, we argue, are the deeply problematic beliefs in universal notions of disability and global development that are anchored to colonial frameworks of understanding and approaching human differences. We explore the presence of these colonial frameworks in three specific areas: the language of disability; understandings of personhood; and notions of inclusivity. We propose that bringing about transformation in these areas would mean using alternative indigenous strengthsbased frameworks of thinking and practices that uncover and value local epistemologies, understanding the complexities of local cultural, historical, and material contexts, and resisting colonial modes of thinking that label these practices as backward.

 

Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1

Decolonizing inclusive education: A collection of practical inclusive CDS- and DisCrit-informed teaching practices implemented in the global South

ELDER, Brent C
MIGLIARINI, Valentina
English
2020

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In this paper, we present a collection of decolonizing inclusive practices for elementary education that we have found effective when implementing them in postcolonial countries. The choice and implementation of such practices was informed by the intersectional and interdisciplinary theoretical framework of Critical Disability Studies (CDS) and Disability Critical Race Theory in Education (DisCrit), and guided by decolonizing methodologies and community-based participatory research (CBPR). The main purpose of this paper is to show how critical theoretical frameworks can be made accessible to practitioners through strategies that can foster a critical perspective of inclusive education in postcolonial countries. By doing so, we attempt to push back against the uncritical transfer of inclusion models into Southern countries, which further puts pressure on practitioners to imitate the Northern values of access, acceptance, participation, and academic achievement (Werning et al., 2016). Finally, we hope to start an international dialogue with practitioners, families, researchers, and communities committed to inclusive education in postcolonial countries to critically analyze the application of the strategies illustrated here, and to continue decolonizing contemporary notions of inclusive education.

 

Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1

Sexual violence against girls and young women with disabilities in Ethiopia. Including a capability perspective

DESSIE, Samrawit
BEKELE, Yirgashewa
BILGERI, Margarita
English
November 2019

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This study examined the attributes of sexual violence against girls and young women with disabilities in the northern part of Ethiopia. In order to reach the proposed objective, six in-depth interviews were conducted with young women with disabilities who were survivors of sexual violence experienced during their adolescence and their caregivers. The study focused on vulnerability factors, situations of perpetrators, effects of sexual abuse and coping strategies.

 

Journal of Global Ethics, 15:3, 325-343

DOI: 10.1080/17449626.2019.1690554

An observation study of power practices and participation in group homes for people with intellectual disability

SVANELÖV, Eric
English
2019

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This study explored how participation constitutes and is constituted by practices of power in group homes for people with intellectual disability. The study used disciplinary power as theoretical perspective and was based on 50 h of observation in two group homes with a total of 15 residents. The analysis identifies practices of power and their relationship to individual agency and participation. The results show that institutional structures construct practices of power that define codes of conduct for the group home residents and their possibility for participation. This study offers implications for the daily lives of residents in group homes for people with intellectual disability.

Critique of deinstitutionalisation in postsocialist Central and Eastern Europe

MLADENOV, Teodor
PETRI, Gabor
English
2019

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In this paper, we explore critically deinstitutionalisation reform, focusing specifically on the postsocialist region of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). We argue that deinstitutionalisation in postsocialist CEE has generated re-institutionalising outcomes, including renovation of existing institutions and/or creation of new, smaller settings that have nevertheless reproduced key features of institutional life. To explain these trends, we first consider the historical background of the reform, highlighting the legacy of state socialism and the effects of postsocialist neoliberalisation. We then discuss the impact of ‘external’ drivers of deinstitutionalisation in CEE, particularly the European Union and its funding, as well as human rights discourses incorporated in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The analysis is supported by looking at the current situation in Hungary and Bulgaria through recent reports by local civil society organisations. In conclusion, we propose some definitional tactics for redirecting existing resources towards genuine community-based services.

Hearing loss grades and the International classification of functioning, disability and health

OLUSANYA, Bolajoko
DAVIS, Adrian
HOFFMANN, Howard
English
September 2019

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The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 466 million people were living with disabling hearing impairment in 2018 and this estimate is projected to rise to 630 million by 2030 and to over 900 million by 2050. However, these projections are based on a hearing impairment classification that does not fully reflect the provisions of the International classification of functioning, disability and health for assessing all forms of functional impairments. The case is made for a review of the concept of disabling hearing loss adopted by WHO after the recommendation of the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) Expert Group on Hearing Impairment in 2008.

 

Bull World Health Organ. 2019;97(10):725-728

doi: 10.2471/BLT.19.230367

Teaching disability: strategies for the reconstitution of disability knowledge

DÍAZ, Karim Del Rocío Garzón
GOODLEY, Dan
English
2019

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As teachers of disability studies, working with students from the health and psychological sciences, we tackle some of our pedagogical challenges and offer productive possibilities. We begin by introducing the offerings of disability studies and then consider our first question: how might we invite disability into our teaching? We introduce a Spanish tale – Por cuatro esquinitas de nada – that, while aimed at children and not explicitly engaged with a disability, permits us to engage in inter-textual analyses of disability. We find that students move through different stages of what we term distinction, idealisation and invisibility/concealment. We then address our second question – what does it mean to teach disability? We answer this with reference to the generative practices of two teaching methodologies: disposal and disavowal. We conclude the paper by considering the importance of generating critical theories of disability.

Access into professional degrees by students with disabilities in South African higher learning: A decolonial perspective

NDLOVU, Sibonokuhle
English
2019

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Background: Former historically disadvantaged social groups such as women, black people and those with disabilities are expected to participate in the skilled labour force that South Africa has pledged to produce for the 21st century. However, in the South African context, research widely neglects access of those into professional degrees in higher learning. There is a need for such an exploration because people with disabilities have been found to be excluded from professional employment.

 

Objectives: Using decolonial theory, this empirical study sought to explore obstacles confronted by students with disabilities at entry in a specific institution of higher learning in South Africa. The aim was to unveil the invisible obstacles and their causes for an effective intervention.

 

Method: A qualitative research design was adopted and in-depth interviews were conducted to collect data from the participants. This particular dimension of research method was chosen to enable dialogue and development of partnership, which is important for collecting rich data.

 

Results: While policies of inclusion still enabled access of all students into professional degrees, there were however inequitable practices, alienation and inequality that excluded students with disabilities at entry. Obstacles seen at surface level were not the real ones; the real ones were the deep-seated issues of coloniality.

 

Conclusion: If the underlying causes of obstacles at entry are not visible to students with disabilities themselves and the responsible stakeholders, students might continue to be oppressed on entry into the professional degrees and in higher learning generally. Obstacles can only be dismantled when there is an awareness about their deep-seated causes.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 8, 2019

Sightsavers' approach to making health services inclusive for everyone

Sightsavers
English
April 2019

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Sightsavers has produced a new film that sets out our work to make health care services accessible and inclusive for everyone. It focuses on our programmes in Bhopal, India and Nampula, Mozambique. This highlights how we work and share learnings globally, but also shows how programmes can be made locally relevant by working with partners with direct experience.

The film showcases some of the people who work hard to make our inclusive health programmes a success, from Sightsavers experts and government health workers to leaders of disabled people’s organisations.

To find out more our inclusive health work and how we are developing best practice in terms of inclusive health programmes, visit our website: https://www.sightsavers.org/disability/health/

‘We only got Coca-Cola’: Disability and the paradox of (dis)empowerment in Southeast Nigeria

NWOKORIE, Okechukwu V.
DEVLIEGER, Patrick J.
English
2019

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Background: Empowerment is the generic name for support services for persons with disability in Nigeria. In it, the elites of the society play leading roles. Special events such as anniversaries, Christmas seasons, wealthy people’s birthdays, investiture of new titles and campaigns before general elections often provide occasions for empowerment programmes.

 

Objectives: This article explores discourses of empowerment of persons with disability in Southeast Nigeria. We concentrate on the relation between local elites and the disability community and how it impacts our understanding of empowerment. Conceptualising empowerment as worldmaking, and disability as something that is ambiguous, we challenge the assumption that the aim of empowerment of disabled people is to improve their (disabled people’s) quality of life.

 

Method: This article relies on research data (collected between January 2014 and January 2017) comprising 72 interviews and participant observations from 27 persons with disability, and 13 social workers and senior government officials.

 

Results: We conclude that discourses of empowerment of disabled people frame disability as loss and tend to conceal the personal stories and survival operations of disabled people.

 

Conclusion: Empowerment discourses ironically provide the platform for local power elites to ‘ride’ to fame on the backs of disabled to extend their influence in society. In the current neoliberal environment of unequal access to opportunities, disabled people must ‘play along’ as a survival strategy. Our qualitative data provide opportunities to reflect on the tensions between the ‘local and the global’, thus indicating how disability issues intersect with other wider questions.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 8, 2019

Provocations for Critical Disability Studies

GOODLEY, Dan
LAWTHOM, Rebecca
LIDDIARD, Kirsty
RUNSWICK-COLE, Katherine
English
2019

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This article posits a number of provocations for scholars and researchers engaged with Critical Disability Studies. We summarise some of the analytical twists and turns occurring over the last few years that create a number of questions and concerns. We begin by introducing Critical Disability Studies; describing it as an interdisciplinary field of scholarship building on foundational disability studies theories. Critical Disability Studies scholarship is being produced at an exponential rate and we assert that we need to take pause for thought. We lay out five provocations to encourage reflection and debate: what is the purpose of Critical Disability Studies; how inclusive is Critical Disability Studies; is disability the object or subject of studies; what matters or gets said about disability; and how can we attend to disability and ability? We conclude by making a case for a reflexive and politicised Critical Disability Studies.

Reimagining personal and collective experiences of disability in Africa

HOWELL, Colleen
LORENZO, Theresa
SOMPETA-GCAZA, Siphokazi
English
2019

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This paper explores understandings of disability in Africa through the personal and collective experiences of a group of postgraduate students at the University of Cape Town in South Africa. The students, as disabled people themselves or practitioners working in the field across Africa, were required to capture their understanding of disability on the continent in a poster, set as a summative assessment task. What emerges from the students’ posters provides valuable insights into the complex social, political and economic factors that influence and shape the experience of disability in Africa. The paper argues that these insights are especially important to existing conceptual thinking around disability and its importance to discussions on Africa and its development. It suggests that grappling more carefully with the experience of disability in Africa brings much needed voices from Africa and the global South into the field of Disability Studies and deepens these debates in valuable and necessary ways.

 

Disability and the Global South, 2019, Vol.6, No. 2

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