Attitudes Towards Disabled Children: A Literature review

Authors: Dr. Shende Mahendra L,Dr. Phalke Vaishali D
VIMS Health Sci Journal: 2016,3(4):181-187|

Abstract: Over the last 60 years, India has evolved into an important player in the international arena. Despite such progress, 25% of the population lives below the poverty line, 40% of the population is illiterate and approximately 70% of the population live in rural areas and lack access to adequate medical care and support services. Loss of hope for the ‘perfect child’ causes grief, and over time the feeling is heightened by loneliness, isolation, and exhaustion. Parents frequently over-protect their child and feel guilty that they are responsible for the child’s disability. There is evidence that family attitude contributes to prognosis in these children. Limited financial resources, lack of appropriate services, and insufficient support systems are the family system risk factors that can contribute to poor prognosis. The idea of children having rights independently of the adults around them is a relatively new concept of the past century and a common theme in early legislation was that children were seen as passive recipients. The rights of the children were envisaged at the CRC and reaffirmed through the recent UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD). However, in India, rehabilitation and the use of AAC may only be adopted if it fits in with the families’ explanation of the impairment. So whilst it fits well if the explanation is biomedical, meaning that the child requires help to become independent, if the impairment is seen as shameful, then it may be more difficult to introduce rehabilitation aids aiming to give the child a voice. Being able to communicate is a fundamental human right. It is only through communication that a person’s basic needs can be met. In addition to the very real link with improving educational performance and economic prospects, improving communication skills can also be linked to child protection through improving a child’s ability to report abuse. Therefore it is crucial to understand the context in which children with communication disabilities live in low income countries.
Keywords: Disabled Children, Convention on the Rights of the Children