Showing posts from June, 2014

Shut out, Shut in, Shut up.

In 2009, the Federal Government commissioned a report into disability in Australia. It was called 'Shut Out', and was prepared by the National People with Disabilities and Carer Council.The report described how Australians with disability were treated - not as second, but as third class citizens. It talked about a broken and fragmented disability services system that failed people with disability and their families. And it made a series of findings which were slated to assist with the implementation of the National Disability Strategy. Listen to this quote from Shut Out - 'Persons with disability are subject to multiple and aggravated forms of human rights violations, including the neglect of their most basic survival related needs. These human rights violations do not only occur in far off places that lack enlightened legislation and policies, or the resources needed to meet basic needs. They occur every day, in every region, of every state and territory in Australia. …

Defined by Disability

I used to work with a woman who was a nose picker. She was great. And then there was the guy I once married. A pornographer and a masturbator. Really nice guy. My kid, he likes to steal and tear headbands off babies in shops. Sometimes he hurts himself. Will you accept his enrolment now? I have never heard anyone make these statements about the people they know. But that is probably because I am not talking about people with disability. Here’s a meme that is currently floating around. It’s developed with the ‘permission of the parents’ to tell the world that T (who I have de identified) must remain locked up in an institution, and why the institution must not close. T, the meme says, displays ‘high risk behaviours’. She takes things from shops, grabs babies’ headbands and takes things from shops. There are, of course, no babies in the institution. T does things, like others do things. But since when did we describe people by what they do? Why, we started doing that when we f…