Considering Life With Disability As Federal Government Is Pushed For Change
There is a new and concerted effort to push the federal government into improving their treatment of disabled people. According to Disability Scoop, a number of advocacy organizations have coordinated to issue new demands of the Biden administration to improve its track record on disability, with everything from the issuance of social support payments to city accessibility standards being targeted.
Through a network of legislation and state-by-state guidance, there is in place a support network for disabled people. How that translates into the matter of day-to-day life is up for discussion.
One area in significant need of reform is disability social security. According to CBS News, delays in receiving payments are forcing people living with disability into tough decisions when it comes to spending, shirking essential nutrition and other essentials in order to accommodate other expenses. Slowness is one reason behind this disparity. Another is the impact of uneven judgments.
There are significant differences in the grant rate of social security payments from judge to judge, with one judge granting 97% of claims while another grants only 10%. There are obviously other factors considered in these judgments, but it does offer a glimpse into the subjective and uneven world of social security litigation.
More evenness is absolutely required to help people living with disability to find the payments they need and ensure a minimum level of dignity. Taking a relaxed approach and applying scrutiny later is key.
American cities are already challenging for people living with disabilities. The relative lack of walkability, the non-uniform approach of mobility aids in public services, and the lack of enforcement in some states around these measures, comes to form a toxic mix.
What’s more, many cities are now pivoting to the 15-minute city principle which, according to Bloomberg, will make life more difficult for people with mobility aids. Restricting access to vehicles will only exacerbate the challenges posed by unsuitable public infrastructure that doesn’t help individuals to access essential services.
Tackling wider healthcare
A fundamental requirement of life for everyone, not just disabled people, is access to good quality healthcare. For disabled people, the need is more accentuated, and poor quality healthcare can lead to a more rapid decline in overall health quality. Furthermore, the absence of good healthcare can lead to more people becoming disabled.
As it stands, the US healthcare system has been described as near ‘collapse’, at least according to Time magazine. Significant reform is mandatory, now, to prevent that. It may seem simple, but putting more money and effort into the industry, and pursuing more radical reform to provide a better tomorrow for the population living with disability.
America can do a lot better for its disabled people. From legislation, to accessibility, to healthcare standards, the country is lagging behind. Change can happen – but it needs to happen soon in order to protect this most vulnerable section of the population.