After still much to do. We need to

After reading these chapters, it was apparent that America needs
to generate change to create a society free of discrimination against people
with disabilities, where people with disabilities are valued, integrated
members of society who have full access to education, homes, healthcare, jobs,
and families. There have been legislative and societal changes over time which
has great influence on the treatment of and attitudes towards people with
disabilities, but there is still much to do. We need to be committed to
ensuring people with disabilities are no longer segregated into, and
overrepresented in, civil and criminal institutions such as nursing homes,
psychiatric settings, jails, and prisons.

Despite the great strides towards expanding the rights of
people with developmental disabilities, limitations of laws and regulations,
poor enforcement of the laws, limited funding programs, disregard for binding
legal standard, and societal prejudices keep many people with disabilities from
being fully included. People with disabilities in the US continue to face a
severe housing crisis. Being a part of a community and living independently are
important values shared by people with disabilities, their families, and
advocates (). However, according to (), affordability, accessibility, housing
discrimination, and availability have been continued issues for individuals
with disabilities. Additional political issues impacting people with
disabilities includes: educational opportunities (lack of qualified special
education teachers and segregated settings), long term supports and services
(placed on waiting lists or possible institutional care), Medicaid
(institutional bias, waiting lists, healthcare provider training and
reimbursement rates, accessible medical care), employment (unequal wages, poor
training and support), and Social Security (programs failing to meet their needs
of the people they are intended to be served).

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When analyzing the underlying messages formed throughout the
book, there is a persistent message of people first and treatment of those with
a disability as people, not labels, limitations, or problems. The definition of
people with developmental disabilities as “people” shifts the emphasis to the
rights of all citizens being applied to all people, and the needs of all people
being understood as the needs of people with developmental disabilities. 


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