Quality and Diversity Disability (Case Study)

Assign Title:
Provide a critical analysis/reflection of a case-study that relates to anti-oppressive policy or practice.
Case Study:
The Education Act in 1946 and The National Assistance Act 1948  as well as The 1981 Education Act  were all based on using categories of  special needs for disabled people, as a mechanism for gate-keeping scarce resources. Similarly and more recently, in the late 1980s and 1990s, the language used in Community Care legislation was again mainly focused on meeting individual  special needs via a professional  care manager  where the  manager by implication manages the process of defining needs and resource allocation.
Additional Info:
Central question: How does the Disability Rights Movement critique policy and practice in reference to the values of equality and diversity?
Overall aims
To begin to engage with conceptual analysis relating to:
Disability and impairment meaning and application?
The  medical and  social models of disability meaning and application?
The social construction of  abnormality and  otherness meaning and application?
The celebration of difference and the Disability Rights Movement meaning and application?

Learning outcomes
To gain a basic appreciation of the difference between  impairment and  disability as this relates to the  medical and  social models of disability
To gain a basic appreciation of the way unequal power relations are reflected in the  medical model and support stereotypical views of disabled people.
To apply a theoretical understanding of inequality and oppression in respect to disabled people to key elements of professional practice
To gain a basic appreciation of the various and competing claims made proponents and advocates within the Disability Rights Movement
To gain a basic appreciation of the similarities and differences between disability rights theorists in respect to their diagnosis and solutions to  disability oppression
To gain a basic appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of these positions as they relate to the  equality and diversity and  anti-oppressive practice debates explored in Part 1

The  Celebration of Difference and the Disability Rights Movement
Understanding the  medical versus  social model of disability  medical impairment versus social disability and the social construction of  abnormality and  dependency
Understanding competing notions of  empowerment in policy and practice  Who is the expert? And  equal rights versus  special needs
Understanding diversity as a  cause for celebration  competing notions of citizenship   active contributor versus  passive dependent

The medical model of disability:

Disability is caused by an individual medical condition that significantly limits a person s physical or mental capabilities

Implications of medical model:
The causes of disability are located with the individual
Individual limitations are considered to be a  personal tragedy
These limitations are likely to lead to less fulfilled lives compared with  able-bodied people
The medical cure of disability is the best option
That medical experts will provide this cure if not then the next best option is providing appropriate care to alleviate the disabled condition and its effects

What then are the main features of the social model of disability according to the DRM?

The social model of disability according to the DRM:

 & In our view it is society which disables physically impaired people. Disability is something imposed on top of our impairments by the way we are unnecessarily isolated and excluded from full participation in society. Disabled people are therefore an oppressed group in society. (Union of The Physically Impaired Against Segregation: 1976, p.1)

 Disability exemplifies a continuous relationship between physically impaired individuals and their social environments, so that they are disabled at some times and under some conditions, and able to function as ordinary citizens at other times and conditions. (Liachowitz: 1988, p.3).

The implications of the social model of disability
The causes of disability are located in the way society is organized or structured in relation to impairments
This offers a non-individualized account of disability causes (again connect with the individual versus structural debates explored in Part 1 and the debates between liberal feminists and Marxist and radical feminists explored in Part 2).
There is distinction between  impairment and  disability where impairment is associated with medical condition: and where disability is associated with oppression and exclusion
Essential Readings:
Colin Barnes and Geof Mercer  Disability: A Choice of Models in C. Barnes and G. Mercer (2003), Disability (Cambridge: Polity Press).
Michael Oliver  From Needs to Rights in M. Oliver (1996), Understanding Disability: From Theory to Practice (London: MacMillan) Don Blackburn  Young People, Youth Work and Disability in Jeff, T. and Smith, M. (Eds) (1990) Young people, Inequality and Youth work (Hampshire: Palgrave)