The Compounding Problem of Gender Bias and Disability Prejudices

Living with a disability is not easy, but things seem to be even more difficult for women who have to deal with some kind of disability in their life. As a society, we have come a long way, and there don’t seem to be many differences between men and women without disabilities nowadays. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for those who do have some disability. The poverty gap between men and women with disabilities is rather large in favour of men, not to mention the existing gap between women with disabilities and men without disabilities.

Employment issues

One of the biggest problems for women with disabilities is the difficulty to find employment as well as the ability to get promotions. Unfortunately, even though it might seem that the world has changed for the better, once the disability comes into the picture, suddenly, the stereotypes associated with both women and disabled people seem to prevail. Precisely because of that, it’s rather difficult for women with disabilities to move up the corporate ladder, earn better living or even find a job in the first place. The larger percentage of disabled women still has to survive on government support.

Higher abuse and violence rates

Unfortunately, gender also plays a role when it comes to interpersonal violence. Namely, women with disabilities are more likely to suffer from emotional, verbal and physical abuse than women without disabilities. Not to mention that most ladies who have to struggle with a disability are not aware of or don’t know how to utilize available support resources. It’s not uncommon for doctors to fail to recognize the abuse, especially if it’s not physical due to the nature of disability either. In the end, this particular situation can also lead to a higher poverty rate among women with disabilities, as it’s difficult to recognize care neglect, money withholding, stealing, and so on.

Transportation problem

In general, transportation matter can be rather problematic for everyone with a disability, and even if a community starts working on setting up proper transportation solutions for the disabled, the process will take too much time before it’s actually implemented. However, women are again at a disadvantage here. Horrifyingly, it’s not unheard of women with disabilities getting molested in public transport. Aside from physical threats, they often have to suffer from verbal abuse by both the driver and other passengers. Not only does this result in additional stress and anxiety, but it also makes it difficult for women with disabilities to commute to work, doctor’s appointments and other places they need to be in order to better their lives.

Unaccepting society

People don’t have to understand what someone’s going through in order to be kind and accepting. Still, women with disabilities often encounter a lot of prejudice from the society at large, as if they’re the ones responsible for their condition. This particular mindset is less likely to accompany the lives of men with disabilities. It’s important to mention that one in every five women in Australia suffers from some kind of disability, yet they are still half as likely to find employment as men with disabilities. Therefore, professional occupational therapy in Liverpool and other rehabilitation centres can make a world of difference for ladies in the society by helping them get back on their feet at least just a little bit.

Lack of proper education

It’s particularly worrying that children with disabilities, and especially intellectual disabilities, are often denied proper education due to stereotypes and inadequate educational system. And when you count in the stereotypes associated with women and people with disabilities in the workforce, lack of proper education only exacerbates the issue at hand. It’s unsurprising that poverty among women with disabilities is continuing to be on the rise.

Even though we might like to think that society is no longer biased and that gender stereotypes don’t affect our lives anymore, the truth is still a bit different and darker. This is especially evident among the female population who suffers from some kind of disability. In that respect, specific programs oriented towards effective solutions to this problem are more than necessary on a global scale, and have to be incorporated into every single aspect of one’s country in order to result in success. What’s more, women with disabilities tend to have a lot more problems they have to face on a daily basis compared to men, simply due to their gender and mental/physical state, which signals quite a long road ahead of us for bettering the lives of this particular population.

What do you think?

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