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Disability, Class Migration and Perceptions

Published: 2011-05-12 - Updated: 2022-04-04
Author: Thomas C. Weiss | Contact: Disabled World (Disabled-World.com)
Peer-Reviewed Publication: N/A
Additional References: Disabled World Editorials Publications

Synopsis: The presence of financial security at some point in a person's life does not ensure that money and health security will remain. People who may be wealthy and a model of fitness and health can and do indeed experience disabilities. People who have forms of disabilities do become successful and gain wealth. There is a great disparity in the numbers of people with disabilities who succeed, true - but this is due to stigma, lack of opportunities, and a nation that is built on the notion of 'everyone for themselves.' From the perceptions of far too many non-disabled persons in America, those of us who do experience forms of disabilities are viewed as people who can never succeed. People who have adapted to life with a disability or disabilities are some of the most creative and diligent people you will ever meet.

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Wealthy people, do not experience any forms of disabilities, and who live outside any recognition of the Disability Realm do tend to forget that disability affects their lives as well. From the potential for temporary forms of disability such as a broken leg or arm, to family members, friends, or associates who can experience disabilities - people who are wealthy are far from being somehow, 'outside,' of the ability to experience disability.

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The Kennedy Family can certainly tell wealthy families how disability has affected them. As one of the most notable and wealthy families in America, the Kennedy's do remember how Rosemary changed their lives forever. Eunice Kennedy has changed the lives of so many people with disabilities for the better that their numbers perhaps cannot be counted. Wealth cannot buy the joys that Eunice Kennedy Shriver experienced through service to people with disabilities.

Downward migration through the class structure in society is entirely possible due to the costs associated with disability.

From the moment a person experiences a form of disability, the medical costs seem to appear out of thin air. If a hospital stay or stays is involved, the costs rise exponentially. Disabilities requiring durable medical equipment or expensive medications can take a serious toll on the financial well-being of people who might otherwise have considered themselves to be financially secure.

Over time, medical costs, transportation costs, and the costs of aids for assistance with activities of daily living, as well as other financial costs associated with disability, can wear down even some of the most financially stable people. If the person does not have insurance, the financial burdens can be even heavier. Loss of employment due to disability can further reduce a person's income and financial stability.

The perceptions of many non-disabled persons in society of people who experience forms of disabilities includes a presumption that we are all impoverished. One of the reasons for this is the obvious fact that disabilities can cost a great deal of money, placing an unrealistic financial burden on those who experience disabilities. The costs of items can become difficult or impossible to achieve for people who have experienced disabilities over long periods of time. People who were formerly considered to be middle-class can easily find themselves applying for programs such as Social Security Disability (SSDI), Medicare, and Medicaid.

From the perceptions of far too many non-disabled persons in America, those of us who do experience forms of disabilities are viewed as people who can never succeed. People who have adapted to life with a disability or disabilities are some of the most creative and diligent people you will ever meet, many times. People who were born with a disability are even more accustomed to living with it and know their abilities, often quite well, and certainly better than others do.

Some people with disabilities do migrate upward through the class structure via education, work opportunities, and assistance. Entrepreneurs with disabilities have done quite well in a number of instances. Take Clare Edwards, for example. Clare is a person who uses a wheelchair after experiencing a car accident as a teenager. She is also the founder of, 'Trabasack Products.' Clare creates products that are inclusive of everyone, despite their ability or age. Her first design won multiple awards; it is a travel bag and lap-tray. Read more: https://www.disabled-world.com/news/uk/trabasack.php

Then there is Arran Smith, who is twenty-five years old and has dyslexia. Arran has an Information Technology company he set up at age twenty! He was diagnosed with dyslexia at age eight and experiences difficulties with reading, as well as processing information. Arran is the managing director of his successful business. Read more: https://www.disabled-world.com/assistivedevices/dyslexic-entrepreneur.php

Disability and class are not bound together, despite the perceptions of many in society.

People who may be wealthy and a model of fitness and health can and do indeed experience disabilities. People who have forms of disabilities do become successful and gain wealth. There is a great disparity in the numbers of people with disabilities who succeed, true - but this is due to stigma, lack of opportunities, and a nation that is built on the notion of, 'everyone for themselves.'

The perceptions of people with disabilities as being unable to accomplish, of people with disabilities lacking the ability to succeed, fail to recognize the fact that we do have a great variety of individual abilities. Tired, outdated, misconceived notions prevent people who experience new disabilities, as well as people who have experienced disabilities for extended periods of time, from succeeding in America. People who migrate through the class structure in this nation due to disabilities deserve the same opportunities to succeed as any person who does not have a disability.

Author Credentials:

Thomas C. Weiss is a researcher and editor for Disabled World. Thomas attended college and university courses earning a Masters, Bachelors and two Associate degrees, as well as pursing Disability Studies. As a Nursing Assistant Thomas has assisted people from a variety of racial, religious, gender, class, and age groups by providing care for people with all forms of disabilities from Multiple Sclerosis to Parkinson's; para and quadriplegia to Spina Bifida.

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Disabled World is an independent disability community established in 2004 to provide disability news and information to people with disabilities, seniors, their family and/or carers. See our homepage for informative news, reviews, sports, stories and how-tos. You can also connect with us on Twitter and Facebook or learn more about Disabled World on our about us page.

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Disabled World provides general information only. The materials presented are never meant to substitute for professional medical care by a qualified practitioner, nor should they be construed as such. Financial support is derived from advertisements or referral programs, where indicated. Any 3rd party offering or advertising does not constitute an endorsement.


Cite This Page (APA): Thomas C. Weiss. (2011, May 12). Disability, Class Migration and Perceptions. Disabled World. Retrieved December 2, 2022 from www.disabled-world.com/editorials/perceptions.php

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