Wednesday, December 1, 2010
No access to life.
Just imagine you were in this chair, and in a dark area. You need the light...and your only access is up the stairs. You sit in this chair and day after day goes by, and you cannot get up there. You can see the light, you know its there. You know that its what you need for a better life and you cannot get up the stairs.
Now imagine even worse....people are passing by, and at first you ask for help over and over again. But no one wants to be bothered.......you eventually give up asking and watch with envy as people skip up the stairs. The envy goes eventually..then despair....and then anger sets in....and then apathy. Life no longer has any meaning....you are just hoping to b saved from this torture.....you wait to die.
This is how it is for some disabled people.....the light is their quality of life. The light is just a symbol for all those things that give a non-disabled person the will to live...the ability to enjoy life, to participate, to make decisions for personal growth.
But this light would always be inaccessible to disabled people in this country, because there is no effort made to ensure that the quality of their life is improved as much as it can be. Our health system doesn't care, our education system doesn't care, people in general don't care.
As a mother of a differently-abled child (he hates to hear disabled) I know the pain of a parent, who feels the pain of their child when the disability excludes them from taking part. There are some issues you cannot change....and you have to accept that, but there are some that get you pissing mad. Like having to ask for cross walks near a busy intersection, which is near a school and being ignored. Like having to wait months for you child to receive physical therapy, and he gives up waiting, popping Excedrins like vitamins to cope with the pain. Like the lack of counselling services for the family who are trying to cope with their child finding independence, and having to cross a busy street with his two foot tall self to go to football like any other fifteen year old teenager. Like having to deal with people who think they know better, and argue with us for having him even have a social life....he should be under constant watch they say....imagine telling your fifteen year old he can't go out at all.
Like having to argue with a security guard that the skateboard is the only way he can keep up with us in the mall or botanical gardens. And....like pulling up to the only available handicapped parking space, to have it stolen away by a driver who just slips in...and watch as a family of able bodied people jump out and dash into the grocery as my child hobbles for ten minutes from car to door just to get inside.
My son eventually gave up using his wheel chair, because depending on it made too many places inaccessible.
Imagine, the device that is supposed to help actually made places inaccessible...ironic no?
The bottom line is...governments don't really care....people don't really care.......
Imagine if you were in that position...wouldn't you want people to care?
The Coalition of Disabled Organisations will be marching the Saturday in protest of the lack of health options for disabled children. The march starts at 8am at the Queen's park Savannah opposite NAPA/Memorial Square. Be there if you care. Because this country only takes action if there are many numbers.........