National Barrier Awareness Day brings awareness to dissolving stigma’s that keep people with disabilities from advancing in education, barriers in physical access, bridging technology gaps and any type of barriers that prevent people with disabilities to reach their full potential. While there have been many achievements, financial, cultural education and physical barriers still exist.
The History of National Barrier Awareness Day
On May 7 1986, President Ronald Reagan signed Proclamation 5472 as National Barrier Awareness Day. President Reagan stated that “Eighty percent of Americans will experience some disability in their lifetime that makes it necessary they must surmount and the contributions that they can make to our society.”
Ways to Remove Barriers
While there are still physical barriers that exists, there is very few information on the mental barriers, meaning people that still hold misconceptions, stereotypes and myths regarding individuals with disabilities. what do I mean by mental barriers?
- people that are unaware that most disabilities are invisible. Someone parking in a handicapped space might not have a physical disabilities, but could suffer from a debilitating pain. There are also people with cognitive disabilities including, Autism, ADHD, and Dyslexia.
- As professionals, myths, and misconceptions continue when we as professionals stop learning and growing. Disabilities change overtime and as professionals and educators it is important to always learn and grow. For examples, very little was known about autism 25 years ago and more so when it comes to co-occurring disorders such as sensory processing disorder (SPD) and Dysgraphia.
- It is time to see the abilities not the disabilities in the person. By focusing on the disabilities, we limit the growth and development which leads to self-confidence to those with disabilities.
Finally, we all have to take the role of advocates. It comes as part of the job. Sometimes it is advocating for both parent and child and using our voice to help others live quality lives.
It is so unbelievable that we are already in May. Even more so that many States are still struggling with COVID19. As I write this, the news is reporting that in many States, lockdowns are easy up. Most programs that i know of are still closed. Here are some activities that can be done both in private homes as well as residential homes. Please continue to stay safe and healthy and continue to wash your hands (a lot)!
Published by: Cerebral Palsy News
Written by: Briana Beaver
“This pandemic is really working for you,” my mom said, half-jokingly. She nor I never could have imagined that over the course of only weeks, society would rearrange itself into a more Briana-friendly place. The “awkward” social necessities characteristic of my interactions with others have now become the norm.
For years, I have received critical looks upon entering a public space wearing a mask. When I would ask people not to stand close to me, to refrain from touching me because of my immunocompromised state, people would look at me strangely. Trying to explain to others that I have been isolated in my home because of environmental health triggers has been met with skepticism. Suddenly, social distancing and quarantining have become the rule, not the exception.
The ability of society to reorganize with warp speed is something to behold. The countless years during which I attempted to legitimize my health needs and requisite social arrangements have felt fruitless. I’ve lost friends and watched sprouting relationships fade into the background because others could not understand my life. The cultural repercussions of the pandemic are providing us with a unique opportunity not only to legitimize the various needs of those with chronic health conditions and disabilities, but also to increase awareness about the flexibility of humanity. Click here to read the rest of the story.
Today is Global Developmental Delay Awareness Day. It is recognized the year on the first Friday during the month of May.
What is Global Developmental Delay (GDD)?
Global Developmental Delay is an umbrella term used when children are significantly delayed in their cognitive and physical development and do not meet their developmental milestones in one or more of the development categories. the diagnoses is often used for children under the age of 5 years who are unable to meet benchmarks in intellectual functioning. It is also used when children are not diagnosed with a specific disorder of disability. There are some cased where children may be identified to have a disability however, the type of disability may not be known during the early onset of the disability.
Parents are typically the first to notice their child is not reaching milestones. as professionals, we should equally pay attention when children appear to be delayed in the area of motor, cognitive, speech and social and emotional development and bring it to the attention of parents so the child can be evaluated.
Click below to receive a free copy of the Global Developmental Delay Fact Sheet