Biden won the election over the weekend and is poised to become the nation’s 46th president. Joe speaking on Saturday from his hometown of Wilmington, Delaware. He pledged to work forever as an American. Biden issued a wide-ranging disability plan that called for full equality for all people with disabilities. Including fully funding IEP, phasing out sub-minimum wage, and adding support for direct providers as well as family caregivers. He also promises to back the rights of parents that have children with disabilities and to direct the U.S. Department of Justice to review guardianship laws to ensure that individuals are able to exercise self-determination in line with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Biden also released a plan detailing how he would address the needs of this population during the pandemic.
Biden will work with the people with disabilities to build strong inclusion, including the middle class, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation. It means laws, policies, and culture ensure full inclusion of the individuals with disabilities in the United States, in all parts of society. To break down the barriers, to have option accessible for people with disabilities living and succeeding in their chosen communities, which means good jobs in competitive, integrated employment sector. Have affordable and accessible transportation. Full inclusion of people with disabilities in policy development and enforce the civil rights of people with disabilities. People with disabilities wanted access to employment opportunities in the workplace in their community or around the world to compete for job for a normal life. All the people around the world need to protect people with disabilities. This is why people with disabilities are advocating for full equality.
Approximately 4 in 10 adults are at heightened risk of being diagnosed with a serious illness if infected by the Covid-19, including many people with disabilities. Risk of getting Covid is even greater for individuals with disabilities living in group homes and other care facilities including a nursing home. People with disabilities as well as their families and the workforce that supports them, require urgent additional resources and support to protect their health, while being independent. A Biden Administration will ensure that the state has the resources to enable people with disabilities to remain safe in their own home and community, free from institutionalization and protect their civil rights under the ADA and Olmstead. For Americans and individuals with disabilities living in group homes and other facilities, increasing the demand for care in-home and community-based settings. Biden ensures that direct support professionals, home healthcare assistant, and personal attendant care workforce are deemed as essential workers so that they have the personal protective equipment they need. As such, the intersectionality of the disability community and the disparities faced by too many people with disabilities in underrepresented communities needs to be a high priority for the new administration.
Biden’s education platform focused on affordability and the student debt crisis. Joe has promised to provide two years of community college or higher-quality training programs without debt for hard-working individuals including people with disabilities. Even if one student with disability graduates and enrolls in college, too many of them do get the continued support they need to complete their post-secondary degree and obtain a good job. Biden will ensure that school districts are meeting their obligations under IDEA to provide transition services to all students with disabilities by the time they turn 16, to encourage them to start earlier at age 14 can graduate and be ready to continue to live in their life as they want to. Post-secondary is very important for students with disabilities in higher education are protected by federal law, which prohibits discrimination and mandates access to appropriate service and resources, many college and post-secondary institutions are struggling to help the students in need. Including struggles for more funding into our programs for those who came from the provincial government and the university themselves. Under Biden administration they will increase funding for programs such as the Model Comprehensive Transition and Postsecondary Programs for students with intellectual Disabilities Coordinating Centre and Transition and Post-secondary Programs for Students with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. To provide funding to community college into 4-year college and university to create inclusive post-secondary programs for young people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the States. And Biden will give states financial incentives to foster collaboration to provide wraparound support services for students with disabilities including child care, mental health service, faculty mentoring, tutoring, and peer support groups. This is why Biden supports more funding for the students with disabilities to access post-secondary education in their life. Being a person with disability myself, I study in a university. I study at University of Manitoba. We have a program called Campus Life where there is an opportunity for the people of disability to have post-secondary education. I get a chance to study courses I like and even get to have a laptop for it. I wish all the
Universities and colleges have a program like campus life to help people with disabilities get further education.
Employers justify the sub-minimum-wages by saying they’re providing the workers with vocational training jobs for those who otherwise never find one. These jobs are a part of community rehabilitation programs which are called “Non-Profit Agencies” or “Sheltered workshops” Such programs are comprised of a mix of nonprofit and private firms, and they receive both federal and private contracts that allow them to use the labor of disabled workers. At such jobs, employees often do piecemeal work, which is often referred to as some disabilities employment, including food and friendly environment. Many community rehabilitation programs claim to have the best interest of people with disabilities. Sheltered workshops undoubtedly reinforce the dangerous notion that disabled people must be isolated and kept from society, whether to protect them or protect others from them. This population gets ignored in discussions of fair wages and workplace diversity and inclusion. This is why the cycle of disabled people being treated as second-class citizens is present. It is alarming to think that a law that was passed over 80 years ago still dictates the livelihood of people with disabilities. This is why societal and political perceptions of disabilities need to change for a better safe inclusion of people with disabilities. Biden plans to eliminate the discrimination that too many people with disabilities face in employment sector. And provide technical assistance and funding for jobs that allow people with disabilities to put their skills, talents, and abilities upfront to have reasonable accommodation in the setting. It is very important for vocational rehabilitation programs to be used for people with disabilities seeking jobs. Why not to train them and empower them into successful people.
A person with disabilities is facing discrimination and barriers every day that restricts them from participating in society on an equal basis with others. Under the Biden administration, there will be strong leadership in recognizing disability rights as human and in expanding opportunities for persons with disabilities in countries around the world. Promoting human rights is very important around the world. The guiding principle will be to maximize the inclusion of people with disabilities, including community-based education, living, and employment opportunities in order to prevent the institutionalization of people with disabilities. Biden will also ensure that foreign assistance programs are disability inclusive and take protective measures to address the need of people with disabilities, including those with invisible disabilities. In 2009 U.S. has signed the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. A treaty which reflects the principles of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Biden will work with the Senate to ratify the Disabilities Treaty and regain their global standing as a leader on disability rights.
Every December 3 we celebrated the International Day of Persons with disabilities to recognize the accomplishments and challenges of persons with disabilities in the U.S. and around the world. Lastly, it is also worth recognizing that President-Elect Biden himself has experienced a stutter throughout his life, and thus is considered a member of the disability community. He is elected to become the 46th President of the United States and has a chance to deliver on his promise to advance opportunities for all Americans including millions of people with disabilities. As a person with disability myself, there is a signalled march needed and a long overdue turning point. It is a powerful moment to hear about the disability community and even celebrate with us the change that is coming for people with disabilities. I hope that Joe Biden will be a successful leader for people with disabilities.