Jackson State University (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2010 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Pages: 1847-1851
ISBN: 978-84-613-5538-9
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 4th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 8-10 March, 2010
Location: Valencia, Spain
Racial/ethnic minority persons constitute approximately 25-30% of the United Sates population with an estimation of Hispanics at 12.5%, Blacks at 12.3%, Asian and Pacific Islanders at 3.7% and American Indians at 0.9%. U.S. Schools will also undergo demographic shifts. Currently, nearly 33% of all children under age 18 are children of color. By 2000, persons with disabilities made up one of the largest minority groups in the United States, with more than 49.7 million persons (or nearly 20% Americans) reporting significant disabilities. Persons with disabilities constitute the largest minority group in the United States. Disability rates have escalated more in the minority population: The disability rates for Native Americans and African Americans (each at 24.3%), Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders (20%) and whites (19.7%) while those of Hispanic origin have a significantly lower rate (15.3%). Racial/ethnic minority persons with disabilities often face attitudinal, physical and social barriers that inhibit full participation in society. A substantial number of diverse individuals are unemployed and underemployed have not been given full opportunity to express their skills in the labor market. Persons with dual or triple minority status (i.e, considering gender, race and disability) may experience unique problems and barriers in school, employment and social settings. Despite historical and current disability legislation (i.e., Americans with Disability Act) barriers continue to exist. Racial/ethnic minority persons with disabilities are more at risk, have fewer personnel and family resources, and fare less well socioeconomically than minorities without disabilities. Many lack pertinent knowledge relevant to health care, child care education, housing and employment resources. Rehabilitation professionals and service providers must be cognizant of various strategies and support services needed to improve the quality of life for ethnic minority persons with disabilities. There is a tremendous need for community-based collaboration to empower the community and optimize rehabilitation service delivery systems including the following: Provision of culturally competent services, utilization of health promotion tools, inclusion of family and community members in health care decision making and location of resources, expanding hours of operation provision of linguistic services, and utilizing natural suppport in the workplace and community. The challenge requires a committment to reduce barriers and improve the quality of life for racial/ethnic minority persons with disabilities to ensure justice, equal access and employment for all citizens.
Racial/Ethnic Minorities, Disabilities, Resource Collaboration.