Sunday, April 1, 2012

Defining Self-Advocacy

Pennell, R. L. (2001). Self determination and self-advocacy: Shifting the power. Journal of Disability Policy Studies, 11(4), 223-227. doi: 10.1177/104420730101100404

This article references the movement in the 1980s for inclusion of people with disabilities. This was a shift away from the norm created in 1848, when the first institutions were created due to the belief that we could teach people with disabilities better if they were separated from the "normal" population.

This article really helped me define what self-advocacy is.

“It means having the opportunity to know your rights and responsibilities, to stand up for them, and to make choices about your own life. Self-advocacy means helping people understand that we are all "able" and empowering people to take control over their own lives to make decisions and take the consequences. Self- advocacy is a process a way of life that is an ongoing learning experience for everyone involved. It means taking risks and going after your dreams. It means making mistakes and learning from them. Self-advocacy is a revolution for change, to enable people with and without disabilities to live in harmony. Self-advocacy is founded on the belief that together, we can create the spark to light the fire of a better life for all of us.”

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