People with disability are more likely to be victims of crime – here’s why

The Conversation, February 22, 2019 6.06am AEDT

Some of our most vulnerable citizens have been beaten, raped, and even killed at the hands of those supposedly caring for them.

The statistics are alarming. Up to 90% of women with disability have been sexually assaulted. And people with disability are three times as likely to die prematurely than the general population from causes that could have been prevented with better quality care.

But to provide victims with justice, we need to better understand why people with disabilities are more vulnerable to abuse and assault.

The everyday experiences of LGBTI people living with disability

GLHV@ARCSHS, La Trobe University,  July 2018

This report documents the effects of systemic discrimination on the health and wellbeing of LGBTI people with disability.

It is divided into two key sections. The first reviews the national and international research and policy literatures on the impacts of systemic discrimination, disadvantage and social exclusion on the health and wellbeing of LGBTI people with disability and their access to services.

The second, smaller section presents preliminary analyses of unpublished data on LGBT people with disability from Private lives 2: The second national survey of the health and wellbeing of LGBT Australians (2012).

KEY FINDINGS:

The review found that research, policy and practice on the health and wellbeing of LGBTI people with disability in Australia is fragmented, under-resourced and relies on different, sometimes contrary definitions of ‘disability’.

The review documents higher rates of discrimination and reduced service access among LGBTI people with disability compared with people with disability and LGBTI people without disability; greater restrictions on freedom of sexual expression (particularly for LGBTI people with intellectual disability); and reduced social support and connection from both LGBTI and disability communities.

It documents a lack of professional training, resources and support for disability and allied health care workers for LGBTI people with disability. It also found that many disability services and workers are unwilling to address the sexual and gender identity rights and freedoms of LGBTI people with disability.

Sexual activity and sexual health among young adults with/without intellectual disability

BMC Public Health 201818:667

https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-018-5572-9

Abstract

Background

There is widespread concern about the sexual ‘vulnerability’ of young people with intellectual disabilities, but little evidence relating to sexual activity and sexual health.

Method

This paper describes a secondary analysis of the nationally representative longitudinal Next Steps study (formerly the Longitudinal Survey of Young People in England), investigating sexual activity and sexual health amongst young people with mild/moderate intellectual disabilities. This analysis investigated family socio-economic position, young person socio-economic position, household composition, area deprivation, peer victimisation, friendships, sexual activity, unsafe sex, STIs, pregnancy outcomes and parenting.

Results

Most young people with mild/moderate intellectual disabilities have had sexual intercourse by age 19/20, although young women were less likely to have sex prior to 16 than their peers and both men and women with intellectual disabilities were more likely to have unsafe sex 50% or more of the time than their peers. Women with intellectual disabilities were likely to have been pregnant and more likely to be a mother.

Conclusion

Most young people with mild/moderate intellectual disabilities have sex and are more likely to have unsafe sex than their peers. Education and health services need to operate on the assumption that most young people with mild/moderate intellectual disabilities will have sex.

Behavioural Support Practice Guides for young people with a disability

University of NSW

University of NSW’s Intellectual Disability Behavioural Support Program has released practice guides for behaviour support programs for young people with a disability.

  • Being a planner with a person with disability and complex support needs

This Planning Resource Kit is intended to strengthen existing good practice and to provide guidance for engaging a person with complex support needs in planning. The kit is aimed at workers in planning or related roles, such as case managers or service coordinators, who engage with people with complex support needs.

  • Understanding behaviour support practice guide: children 0-8 years

The purpose of this guide is to assist in the prevention and reduction of the development of challenging behaviour in young children aged 0–8 years. The development of challenging behaviour can place additional strain on families and support systems and their capacity to provide effective support to the child. It is intended that this material will assist support networks to address early stages of the development of challenging behaviour and to maintain capacity for effective support.

  • Understanding behaviour support practice guide: children 9-18 years

The purpose of this guide is to assist in the prevention and reduction of the development of challenging behaviour in children and young people aged 9–18 years. The development of challenging behaviour can place additional strain on families and support systems and their capacity to provide effective support to the child/young person. It is intended that this guide will assist support networks to address early stages of the development of challenging behaviour and to maintain capacity for effective support

 

A survey on violence and discrimination among people with disabilities

BMC Public Health 2018 18:355

https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-018-5277-0

Abstract

Background

The aim of the study was to quantify levels of violence and discrimination among people with disabilities and analyze the effects of gender and the type and degree of disability.

Methods

The study analyzed data on self-reported violence and discrimination from a Danish national survey of 18,019 citizens, of whom 4519 reported a physical disability and 1398 reported a mental disability.

Results

Individuals with disabilities reported significantly higher levels of violence than those without. Specifically, individuals reporting a mental disability reported higher levels of violence and discrimination. Significant gender differences were found with regard to type of violence: while men with disabilities were more likely to report physical violence, women with disabilities were more likely to report major sexual violence, humiliation and discrimination. Neither severity nor visibility of disability was found to be a significant factor for risk of violence.

Conclusions

This large-scale study lends support to existing research showing that people with disabilities are at greater risk of violence than people without disabilities. Further, the study found that people with mental disabilities were significantly more likely to report all types of violence and discrimination than those with physical disabilities. The findings also show that gender is significant in explaining the type of violence experienced and the experience of discrimination.

“A Credo for Support” [video]

San Luis Obispo People First, via Youtube

This video is spoken by members of San Luis Obispo People First, a self-advocacy group for people with disabilities in California. They are people living with intellectual disabilities, and they speak here about how they would like to be treated.

Thanks to Ralph Brew for this submission.

 

  • Watch video above or here
  • Access People First of San Luis Obispo website here