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Disability Awareness 101


Service member address human needs in education, ... and all other rights given to able bodied ... PowerPoint Presentation Basic Disability Etiquette Ten ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Disability Awareness 101

Disability Awareness 101
  • Serve Alabama
  • AmeriCorps State Programs

Why are we here today ?
National Service
  • National Service is community volunteerism that
    is encouraged and supported by the federal
  • Service member address human needs in education,
    health, public safety, and the environment.

National Service Inclusion
  • Inclusion refers to the active engagement of
    people with disabilities as service members and
    volunteers in all levels of national and
    community service.

Why Inclusion?
  • Inclusion means taking proactive steps to ensure
    that you create a welcoming and positive
    environment for persons with disabilities.
    Program must be open and creative and will to do
    what it takes to ensure that people with
    disabilities are full and active participants in

  • Definition of Disability
  • To develop an awareness of the history of the
    Independent Living Movement
  • To develop an understanding of the ADA
  • To develop an understanding of person-first
    language and proper etiquette

  • 56.7 million people with disabilities
  • 2.2 million since 2005 increase
  • 8.7 percent of the population with some
    impairments which is 1 in 5 Americans

Definition of Handicap
  • Have you ever wondered where the word handicap
    came from?
  • The dictionary has one definition from an old
    Gaelic term which referred to a person with a
    disability as one who had to stand on the street
    corner begging with his cap in hand. (Get it?
    Cap in hand...handicap???) Is this a term that
    should be applied to anyone with a disability?

History of the Disability Movement Prior to 1800
  • Individuals with disabilities were isolated in
    their homes, no services were provided, treated
  • They were looked upon as objects of scorn,
    deviant, defective, non-existent, abnormal

History of the Disability MovementLate 1800s
  • Individuals with disabilities attended
    residential schools, institutionalized training
  • The goal of these institutions was to make the
    individual with a disability normal.
  • Individuals were looked upon as sick, and often
    incurable, long term care and protection were the
    goals, the philosophy of the care was the medical

History of the Disability MovementEarly 1900s
  • Individuals with disabilities were housed in
    Institutions/asylums with subhuman conditions.
  • These settings proved to be an inexpensive way
    to deal with individuals with disabilities.
  • The institutions ensured that interaction between
    citizens in surrounding communities and
    residents with disabilities did not occur.

History of the Disability Movement1940
  • Research/use of medication becomes more prominent
  • Disability was still viewed as a defect, and
    should be cured

History of the Disability Movement1970s
  • Independent Living Centers were formed to
    advocate for and provide other services to
    individuals with disabilities
  • Services focused on assisting individuals with
    disabilities to become contributing, active and
    functional members of society

History of the Disability Movement1990s
  • Americans with Disabilities Act is passed, aims
    to end all form of discrimination toward
    individuals with disabilities
  • Guarantees individuals with disabilities access
    to employment, housing, education,
    transportation, and all other rights given to
    able bodied citizens
  • Individuals with disabilities now are viewed as
    protected citizens

The History of the Disability MovementLiving
with a Disability Today
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
  • No otherwise qualified disabled individual in
    the United States shall, solely by reason of his
    or her disability, be excluded from participation
    in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to
    discrimination under any program or activity
    receiving Federal financial assistance.

Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
  • The ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of
    disability in employment, State and local
    government, public accommodations, commercial
    facilities, transportation, and
    telecommunications. It also applies to the United
    States Congress.
  • To be protected by the ADA, one must have a
    disability or have a relationship or association
    with an individual with a disability.

Section 504 ADA Intent
  • Ensure non-discrimination against people with
  • Ensure equal access and opportunity

Disability as Defined by Section 504 of the
Rehabilitation Act the Americans with
Disabilities Act
  • A physical or mental impairment that
    substantially limits one or more major life
  • A record of such an impairment
  • Being regarded as having such an impairment, even
    when no limitations exist

Major Life Activity anything an average person
can do with little or no difficulty
  • Major life activities include, but are not
    limited to caring for oneself, performing manual
    tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking,
    breathing, learning, working, sitting, standing,
    lifting, reaching, sleeping and mental/emotional
    processes such as thinking, concentrating and
    interacting with others.

  • Examples of Impairments
  • AIDS,
  • alcoholism,
  • blindness or visual impairment,
  • cancer,
  • deafness or hearing impairment,
  • diabetes,
  • drug addiction,
  • heart disease,
  • and mental illness.

What is proper etiquette and language for
addressing and working with people with
disabilities? Why is it important?
Welcoming Service Program
  • Individuals with disabilities are full
    participants in program and service activities
  • Individuals with disabilities are expected to be
    treated as peers
  • Expectations for individuals with disabilities
    are the same as for others
  • Reasonable accommodations for qualified
    individuals and to conduct all activities in
    fully accessible settings.
  • Questions and solutions naturally arise about
  • when planning activities
  • Products and interior decorations portray images
  • people with disabilities

Language Guidelines
  • HANDICAP - No!
  • DISABLED - No!
  • e.g., person with a disability not the

  • Person First Language and Basic Etiquette
  • The Golden Rule
  • If you are ever unsure of acceptable language,
    acceptable etiquette, or anything else
  • It is OK to Ask
  • To be unaware and courteous is understandable,
    and often invited
  • To make assumptions is often unacceptable

Basic Disability Etiquette
  • Offering assistance
  • Okay to offer
  • Ask first
  • Clarify assistance desired
  • Preferences are different
  • Accept no
  • Always direct communication to the person with a
  • Unsure what to do? Ask!
  • Make a mistake? Apologize, correct, learn and
    move on
  • Treat adults as adults
  • Relax!

Ten Commandments of Etiquette for Communicating
with People with Disabilities
  1. When talking with a person with a disability,
    speak directly to that person rather that through
    a companion or sign language interpreter.
  2. When introduced to a person with a disability, it
    is appropriate to offer to shake hands. People
    with limited hand use or who wear an artificial
    limb can usually shake hands. (Shaking hands with
    the left hand is an acceptable greeting.)
  3. When meeting a person who is visually impaired,
    always identify yourself and others who may be
    with you. When conversing in a group, remember to
    identify the person to who you are speaking.
  4. If you offer assistance, wait until the offer is
    accepted. Then listen or ask for instructions.
  5. Treat adults as adults. Address people who have
    disabilities by their first names only when
    extending the same familiarity to all others.
    (Never patronize people who use wheelchairs by
    patting then on the head or shoulder.)
  6. Leaning on or hanging on to a persons wheelchair
    is similar to leaning on hanging on to a person
    and is generally considered annoying. The chair
    is part of the personal body space of the person
    who uses it.

  • Listen attentively when youre talking with a
    person who has a difficulty speaking. Be. Patient
    and wait for the person to finish, rather than
    correcting or speaking for the person. If
    necessary, ask short questions that require short
    answers, a nod or shake of the head. Never
    pretend to understand if you are having
    difficulty doing so. Instead, repeat what you
    have understood and allow the person to respond.
    The response will clue you in and guide your
  • When speaking with a person who uses a wheelchair
    or a person who uses crutches, place yourself at
    eye level in front of the person to facilitate
    the conversation.
  • To get the attention of a person who is deaf, tap
    the person on the shoulder or wave your hand.
    Look directly at the person and speak clearly,
    slowly and expressively to determine if the
    person can read your lips. Not all people who are
    deaf can read lips. For those who do lip-read, be
    sensitive to their needs by placing yourself so
    that you face the light source and keep hands,
    cigarettes and food away from your mouth when
  • Relax. Dont be embarrassed if you happen to use
    accepted, common expressions such as See you
    later, or did you hear about that? that seems
    to relate to a persons disability. Dont be
    afraid to ask questions when youre unsure of
    what to do.


Basic Rules to Remember Etiquette for
Communicating with People with Disabilities
  • When meeting a person with a disability always
    direct communication to the person with a
  • It is okay to offer assistance, dont forget to
    ask first, dont assume your help is needed
  • Ask for clarification if you dont understand
    what type of assistance is needed
  • If you make a mistake? Apologize, correct the
    problem, learn and move on
  • Treat individuals as adults
  • Relax!

Dont lean on or touch a person's wheelchair,
cane or crutches. These products are part of the
space that belongs to the person who uses it. Use
a chair, whenever possible, in order to place
yourself at the person's eye level to facilitate
conversation. People with limited hand use or
who wear a prosthetic limb can usually shake
hands. Shaking hands with the left hand is
acceptable. To get the attention of a person
with a hearing disability, tap the person on the
shoulder or wave your hand. Look directly at the
person and speak clearly, naturally and slowly to
establish if the person can read lips. Face a
good light source and keep your hands away from
your mouth when speaking. Do not pretend to
understand what a person is saying if you do not.
Try rephrasing what you wish to communicate, or
ask the person to repeat what you do not
understand. When greeting a person with a severe
loss of vision, always identify yourself and
others who may be with you. When conversing in a
group, give a vocal cue by announcing your name
and the name of the person to whom you are
Service Animal is any guide dog, signal dog, or
other animal individually trained to provide
assistance to an individual with a disability
regardless of whether they have been licensed or
certified by a state or local government. Do
not touch or pet the Service Animal, without
permission. Do not make noises at the
Service Animal, it may distract the animal
from doing its job. Do not feed the Service
Animal, it may disrupt his/her schedule.
The person may not feel like discussing the
assistance the Service Animal provides.
Things to Remember about Disclosure
  • Its up to the individual to disclose a

  • Thank you!
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