Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Disability Blog Carnival #46: Falling

I have had nightmares of falling since I was a little kid--when I read in a psychology class at some point that falling is is a pretty common nightmare I was so relieved! I don't bungee jump, or even jump off diving boards. Falling is not my idea of entertainment.

Yet for my daughter who is a teenager with a disability it looks like falling is what comes next. After highschool, then what??

Healthcare: adults with disabilities (even pretty old adults) if they have physician coverage at all are usually covered by their pediatricians. I thought the biggest reason for this would be lack of expertise, but no. The biggest reason is because adult practitioners won't take Medicare patients.

And why are most of these folks on Medicare? Because other insurance coverage is tied to employment.

Employment: The unemployment rate for people with disabilities is a steady 65-75%. The rate of underemployment is pretty darned high as well--one of my friends had a workshop job where he made $1.19/hr just a couple years ago. Think that job had great benefits?

Housing: So with no employment what do you suppose happens with housing? What are the options? Home ownership is somewhat rare (I told my son that that saying 'somewhat rare' when I mean 'never happens' is called lowperbole--he said, "No poetic license for you!")The fact that a person with a disability can never accumulate more than $2000 makes ownership impossible--how would you ever put on a new roof?

People talk about falling out of education and into adulthood where they must surrender to system control or life at mom's with the remote control... (I'd say 'over my dead body,' but that just makes my point.)

Our community is working hard on this, but I am still having nightmares. And, as my daughter used to say: I can't like it.

Edited to add the line I didn't realize I'd left out: The generations of parents, advocates and self-advocates brought our kids home and started them on the path of education. Our generation is charged with the next phase: employment and LIVES! We have much to do, but the alternative is unthinkable.

Picture from here.

OOPS: Forgot to mention there is a great treat ahead.

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