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NO Stereotypes
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Copyright image - compass and saying, don't do something to a person with a disability that you would not do to a person who doesn't have a disability


System v. Community

As Seen by the System verses the Community

In a social service system
people are known by what's wrong: by their condition or label
In community
people are known as individuals.

In a system
people are incomplete and need to be changed or "fixed"

In community
people are as they are, with opportunities to follow their own dreams.

In a system
relationships are unequal; service workers do things "for' clients and don't look for any contribution in return

In community
relationships are reciprocal, give and take; and the diverse gifts of many people are recognized.

In a system
people are broken into parts and separated into groups

In community
people have the chance to be accepted as whole persons, and viewed as part of the whole society.

In a system
problems are solved by consulting authorities, policies , procedures

In community
people seek answers from their own experience and the wisdom of others.

In a system
there is no room to acknowledge mistakes and uncertainty ; information is communicated in professional jargon that distances individuals from their actions

In community
people can make honest efforts and acknowledge honest mistakes and fears.

In a system
all problems have a rational solution

In community
there is room for confusion, and mystery, and recognition that some things are beyond human control.

from: The Gift of Hospitality: opening the Doors of Community to People with Disabilities.
Written By: Mary O'Connell, produced By: The Community Life Project, Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research, Northwestern University Evanston, IL.
From the newsletter 'Sharing of the Down Syndrome Parent Support Group in Phoenix, AZ,

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Last modified: 07/04/10

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