In January 2005 the Government published a strategy [ Strategy Unit, Cabinet Office (2005) Improving the life chances of disabled people] designed to transform the lives of disabled people. The strategy states that by 2025 disabled people should have full opportunities and choices to improve their quality of life. It aims to empower and involve disabled people, personalise the support they receive and remove the barriers to inclusion and participation. It highlights two key areas relevant to this research – better family support to enable families with young disabled children3 to remain socially and economically included; and a major expansion of direct payments to increase disabled people’s ability to live independently. In addition, a new Office for Disability Issues is to be established to co-ordinate government work on disability.
Disabled young people and their parents ask only that society offers them equality of opportunity that is socially driven – rather than based on the idea that if they can be ‘fixed’ they can join in.
Opportunities for children to be included are affected by the way in which providers of recreational provision see disability itself. The medical model of disability focuses on an individual who has a medical condition which causes problems that need to be cured rather than looking at their abilities. The social model of disability is empowering as it focuses on solutions such as awareness raising, planning and design which make the environment accessible to everyone. There is an expectation from government departments and statutory agencies that all will work to the social model of disability but this is not evident from children’s feedback.
Editor's comments - [ This report is based on research findings from a 15 week survey of leisure opportunities for disabled children and young people in six local authorities in the South East of England. ] Reference this?Cryer, J. (Year). This page title in italics. Retrieved date, from <this page's full URL>
In the text: Cryer (year)
Reference : Kelly, D. (2005). Inclusive leisure opportunities: for children and young people aged 8-16 with Special Educational Needs and/or disabilities in South East England. London: SEN partnerships
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