According to the World Health Organization, anything that is present or absent in an individual’s environment, which stops them from functioning to their full potential and leads to disability is called a barrier. There are a number of barriers that people with a physical disability in particular, have to face – from attitudinal barriers to physical, job, accessibility, communication, social, and policy barriers. Here, we have discussed some of them.
1. Attitudinal Barrier
The most challenging barrier faced by people with a disability is attitudinal barrier. This is based on the attitude that other people have for people with a disability. This could be because of ignorance, lack of empathy, hate, fear, or misunderstanding, as a person who is not disabled may not understand the struggles of those who are facing the condition.
They end up stereotyping these individuals, and attach stigma to their disability. This is the reason why they are unable to appreciate the potential that the person with a disability possesses. They also start judging that their quality of life is poor because of their disability, which is in reality, beyond their control.
2. Barrier to Communication
People suffering from impairments that hinder communication or having a different means of interacting with people tend to face communication barriers. For example, people with a hearing impairment cannot benefit from an auditory safety message or warning issued in a public area.
Similarly, people with vision impairment cannot read warning signs or messages, unless they are communicated in Braille language. In such situations, there should be an alternative such as a Braille version of the message for someone with vision impairment.
3. Accessibility Hurdles
There are a number of workplaces and residential areas where there is a lack of an elevator or even an entrance ramp. This creates problems for individuals with a disability to commute from their place to other areas and hinders their functionality. Moreover, there is no transport present for people with a vision or cognitive disability to drive themselves. Public transport also does not have any convenient facilities for such disabled people, and they have to travel all the way to the bus stop to get the bus.
4. Technical or Programmatic Hurdles
A technical hurdle is when the place lacks important technical devices that are essential and can assist the person with a disability to complete a task easily. Programmatic barriers are those in which the impaired individuals face problems in getting healthcare or accessing the public health program. This also includes difficulty in scheduling appointments, lack of communication and lesser time for medical process and evaluation.
These are just a few of the barriers that people with a disability face on a regular basis. Serious attention needs to be directed towards these concerns in order to eradicate these hurdles for disabled individuals everywhere.