Impactful Changes but Challenges Remain
Disability Pride Month celebrates the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990 which was designed to protect the rights of people with disabilities.1 It is estimated that approximately 1 in 4 Americans are living with a disability.2 While the ADA has provided impactful changes which benefit people with disabilities in areas of transportation, infrastructure, employment and housing, there are still challenges for people with disabilities to achieve true equity in all areas.
In the workplace, people with disabilities are often paid less than other employees, are often employed in lower wage positions, and hesitate to seek necessary workplace accommodations. The stigma which still surrounds people with disabilities can create an unwelcoming environment, whether it’s intentional or unintentional.
The American Bar Association (ABA) notes on its website that Disability Pride Month is about “accepting and honoring each person’s uniqueness and seeing it as a natural and beautiful part of human diversity.”3
As coaches, think about how you might create an inclusive coaching space.
- Are there any physical barriers in your office or meeting spaces that might impact a person with a disability?
- Is your website accessible?
- Do you hold some unconscious biases about how a person with a disability might behave or think?
It is important that everyone seeks to challenge ableism, learn more about what is considered a disability, and elevate the voices of disabled people.2 During this month, many cities and communities are hosting events and programs to celebrate Disability Pride. I encourage you to make an effort to learn more about challenges people with disabilities face in at least one area and make a commitment to being an advocate for people with disabilities.
- 5 Questions To Think About This #DisabilityPrideMonth
- In Their Own Words: How The Americans With Disabilities Act Changed People’s Lives
- The ADA at 30, Looking Back and Looking Ahead