Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Labour Inclusion

People with disabilities are forced to live discriminated and with limitations set by their condition, not only towards their condition but also related to their role in society.

Human beings have a role in this life, a specific one. For most people their main objective is to work, to earn money so that they can get anything they want in their life. People with disabilities often encounter themselves with the idea of not being well enough “adapted” to do activities that a person without disabilities can do regularly. This is definitely an idea that society has imposed and decided on as a command to belong to the world and perform daily. This also applies when thinking that people with disabilities are actually sick, and that this illness won’t allow them to work normally.

Personally I think that every human being has different abilities no matter if they have a special condition or a disability. If a person can perform in any dignified job and this will support and help with the growth of the country and the whole world. We all have specific roles to fulfill and because of the importance money has in the world (something I personally believe to be absurd, but then again that’s how the world moves), the human being is considered to be more of a production machine than a real person, the only thing that is thought to be important nowadays is that people need to produce a lot and spend just enough. This is one of the reasons people think that if a person has a disability he or she will cost more than what it will produce, which is enough reason for them not to work, because they are “sick” and ill people can’t do anything other than living with the condition they came into the world with.

After working as a volunteer in the ICS programme, mainly working in a Project focused on social and labour inclusion amongst other things; I have seen that the only thing people with disabilities ask for is acceptance, accepting that they have a disability and that with it they can perform in many different jobs. Keeping in mind that public spaces need to be adapted for their inclusion, for example, a person that uses a wheelchair has the right to freely move around in spaces where there are no obstacles, or a person who has a visual disability deserves to have the material and equipments adapted in Braille to be able to perform. That is where I start to think that the problem is our society, because it’s us who won’t include people with disabilities, because people with disabilities represent a negative thing regarding jobs, or because you need to invest more so that the labour conditions are right for them.    
I find it really funny when people without disabilities talk about people with disabilities and their rights, because it doesn’t matter how much you talk about or criticize it, if you actually won’t do anything about it. When people talk in favor of labour inclusion in our society but at the same time they don’t wish to be fully involved practicing inclusion, I feel a huge disappointment. Being able to work or do something to raise awareness for the inclusion of people with disabilities en the society is something that has really helped me and has made a change within me, in my life and way of thinking. Ever since I started working as a volunteer in the ICS programme at International Service, I believe that I am helping and doing something to change the world and the country I live. Now I can say that I am starting to do something instead of just talking, and that’s part of my role in this world, to help those who feel that don’t have any voice or right to ask for what they must have, in this case the right to work in any place they consider they can perform the best, and not being seen as someone who can’t contribute to the global main “ideal” that is to make money so you can reach “happiness”. This is where I begin to question: If you can’t work, so you can’t make money, then you can’t achieve happiness? And that’s something that gives me more energy to work for the inclusion of people with disabilities so I’m not part of the people who think and don’t act.

My experience this two months working in the ICS program not only gave me the opportunity to learn more about something I love, but also gave me the opportunity to participate in something that I think is going to change the future of my country, giving all the people with disabilities the opportunity to be part of a society and helping those who maybe have lost their faith in their own capacity to feel accepted, respected and valued in their country and the world.

Blog by: Camila Richter

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