Through a close examination of employment, education, transportation, telecommunications and health care, About Canada: Disability Rights explores the landscape of disability rights in Canada and finds that, while important advances have been made, Canadians with disabilities still experience significant barriers in obtaining their human rights. Using the stories and voices of people with disabilities, Deborah Stienstra argues that disability is not about “faulty” bodies that need to be fixed, but about the institutional, cultural and attitudinal reactions to certain kinds of bodies, and that neoliberal ideas of independence and individualism are at the heart of the continuing discrimination against “disabled” people. Stienstra contends that achieving disability rights is possible, but not through efforts to “fix” certain kinds of bodies. Rather it can be achieved through universal design, disability supports, social and economic supports and belonging – in short, through foundational social transformation of Canadian society.
“Because the UNCRPD, which Canada ratified in 2010, affirms the right to equality of opportunity, every occupational therapist in Canada should read this book, which provides a valuable resource as we work with people with disabilities to assure their opportunities for participation in occupations are equal to our own.”
— Karen Whalley Hammell for the Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy 82(1) (full review)