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'Rights and Equality of Opportunity not help and sympathy'. Outline what disabled people do and do not want from healthcare professionals.

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

112SW Welfare, Health and Inequalities 'Rights and Equality of Opportunity not help and sympathy'. Outline what disabled people do and do not want from healthcare professionals. Word Length - 1596. Reflection. Word Length - 983 Emma Arber BSc (HONS) Child Health 'Rights and Equality of Opportunity not help and sympathy'. Outline what disabled people do and do not want from healthcare professionals. There are rights in place to help disabled people achieve equality of opportunity but often people's attitudes stand in the way. To remove these barriers we first need to understand how these views and attitudes have been implemented in society, and what needs to be done to eliminate them. "One in seven of the population has a disability and many experience problems in the workplace, in accessing everyday services, in education and transport." (www.drc-gb.org) The World Health Organisation defines disability as: 'Any restriction or lack (resulting from an impairment) of ability to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being.' Whereas it may be normal for a 40 year old to run up a flight of stairs without panting would it be so for an 80 year old? So the question to be asked is whether the 80 year old is disabled by age or by the step builder? Disability is more commonly defined as "a loss or restriction of functional ability or activity as a result of body or mind". (Oxford English Dictionary) As a result of a definition like this disability is seen as a problem.

Middle

Discrimination may mean that individuals spend their life struggling with low self esteem and unmet safety needs. Discrimination may deny individuals the opportunity to self-actualise. 2. Devaluing, false assumptions, exclusion, negative non-verbal responses from others can influence an individual to develop an inferior sense of self-worth. 3. Exclusion, avoidance and devaluing can mean that a person comes to believe that they do not belong. 4. The threat of attack or verbal abuse, and the threat of devaluation and exclusion can mean that a person does not feel safe. 5. People can be physically damaged as a result of assault. Physical health can suffer if a person is stressed, has poor physical resources or restricted opportunities to access jobs and social activities. (Maslow's Hierarchy of needs) Discrimination can occur in different ways. It can be: * Physical assault of those who appear to be different, * Verbal abuse towards those who appear to be different, * Excluding people from activities and opportunities, * Avoiding people who appear to be different, * Negative non-verbal communication, * Making assumptions and devaluing people Disabled people are shouldn't need to fight for equality, but they do. As a result of this they have managed to bring about a fundamental challenge to the ways they have been thought about. The main achievement was a public recognition that disability is a matter of discrimination not just of sympathy and care which was written into legislation: the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. There is less segregation of disabled people from mainstream society. Voluntary organisations for disabled people now actually led by disabled people.

Conclusion

Stereotypes cause more of a problem. Stereotypically men are seen as strong and dominant. Women are seen as weak and the view is that they should stay at home, do the housework and look after the children. In my opinion these stereotypes don't really exist. Women have changed the way in which they are seen by becoming more career minded. This unit is invaluable. It has taught me to be aware of stereotypes and discrimination. It taught me not to judge people. An example of this would be if an alcoholic came in as an emergency than I would feel that it is his own fault. Now I realise that there may be an underlying cause for the drinking. This unit has led me into thinking that a lot of these topics are usually caused by personal moral failings. We are all responsible for attitudes that have been created and continue to be passed on. If we stopped discriminating, and promoted equality for all then it wouldn't be a problem in a couple of years because our children would not be brought up with these views. By educating the children in school we may be able to teach them to be respectful. Overall I have enjoyed this unit. It was easy to stay focussed because the teaching methods were varied. In my opinion this unit has been interesting, and I would have enjoyed being given the chance to research into some of the other topics. It has made me more aware of other people's thoughts and feelings. I look forward to studying more units on this course and hope they will all be as interesting as this has been and start as much thought and self reflection.

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