July is Disability Pride Month

Buncombe County

July is Disability Pride Month, a time to honor the history, achievements, and contributions of people with disabilities.

It’s a celebration of identity, culture, and the community. Disability Pride initially started as a day of celebration in 1990—the year that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law. The first official celebration of Disability Pride Month occurred in July 2015, which also marked the 25th anniversary of the ADA (American Bar Association). Disability Pride Month celebrates disabled persons embracing their disabilities as integral parts of who they are, reclaiming visibility in public, and interacting fully with their disabilities out in the open (American Bar Association).

This Month is about rejecting the notion that disabilities are flaws or limitations and instead recognizing them as integral parts of human diversity. It is a time for the disability community to unite, uplift, and amplify one another’s voices and be heard (American Bar Association). Disability Pride Month is crucial for raising awareness about the challenges faced by people with disabilities and promoting a more inclusive and accessible society. It’s time to advocate for rights, accessibility, and the dismantling of societal barriers.

Advertisement

A disability is any condition of the body or mind that makes it more difficult for the person with the condition to do certain activities and interact with the world around them. There are many types of disabilities, such as those that affect a person’s vision, movement, thinking, remembering, learning, communication, hearing, mental health, and social impairments (CDC). A total of 13% of all Buncombe County residents have a disability and those 65 and older have the highest rates of disability (US Census, 2021). Although disabled people are sometimes referred to as a single population, disabled people are a diverse group of people with a wide range of needs. Two people with the same type of disability can be affected in very different ways and some disabilities may be hidden or not easy to see (CDC).

There are many resources available for those with disabilities in Buncombe County. NC DHHS offers disability services, vocational rehabilitation, and services for the blind. Disabled Veterans have access to services provided by Veteran Affairs. RHA and Vaya Health offer a variety of services for disabled individuals. Those seeking Social Security supportive services should contact The United States Social Security Administration. Goodwill of Northwest North Carolina offers vocational training and resources in partnership with NC DHHS.

More information about the Buncombe County Equity and Human Rights Office is available through the Buncombe County Website linked here https://www.buncombecounty.org/governing/depts/equity-human-rights-office/default.aspx.

Employees and members of the community can file a discrimination complaint through the Equity and Human Rights Website or by contacting the Non-Discrimination Coordinator at [email protected].

Residents have access to the Racial Equity Action Plan Dashboard at https://buncombe.clearpointstrategy.com.

Sources:

https://www.americanbar.org/groups/diversity/resources/celebrating-heritage-months/disability-pride-month/

https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/disabilityandhealth/disability.html

https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/buncombecountynorthcarolina/PST045222

https://www.goodwillnwnc.org/programs-and-services/

https://www.ncdhhs.gov/

https://www.ssa.gov/

https://www.vayahealth.com/

https://rhahealthservices.org/

https://www.va.gov/

Written by Buncombe County.