Disability Help Books
Disability awareness has gained ground in recent years, but there’s still a long way to go. Many people are uncomfortable dealing with those who have disabilities, and much of this discomfort comes from a basic lack of understanding. People are often clueless about the best way to communicate with people with disabilities, what questions are appropriate to ask, what constitutes a lack of respect, and how to best interact with people that have unique differences.
A new book by Ellen L. Shackelford and Marguerite Edmonds recognizes these difficulties and seeks to raise awareness, inform, and educate, as well as encourage and foster open communication. The book, entitled Beyond Disability Etiquette Matters, is actually a workbook that addresses things that we take for granted and focuses on the issues talented kids and young adults with disabilities face on a daily basis.
The authors themselves have unique perspectives on disability issues. Shackelford sustained a disability through injury and has experienced being overlooked in social situations due to her disability. Founder and president of Connections Access Consulting Services LLC, she has dedicated her life in service toward what she considers unconscious injustice towards the elderly and people with disabilities. Edmonds sustained multiple disabilities following a major stroke, and she serves as the training and education coordinator of Connections Access Consulting Services, where she seeks to help create solutions to disability issues that impact people across the world.
The book is divided into sections which contain objectives, applications, and vocabulary, as well as activities that raise awareness of disability concerns. This new book is the companion to an earlier book by the same authors entitled Disability Etiquette Matters. The workbook asks the public to step outside their comfort zone and expand their horizons with “useful tools to educate yourself.”
The book is inspiring and highlights true stories from real individuals who have dealt with disability-related concerns. Society has taught us that addressing disability issues is an uncomfortable topic; Beyond Disability Etiquette Matters seeks to remove that discomfort and increase our basic understanding of the issues and obstacles faced every day by people with disabilities and increase our respect and acceptance of individuals with disabilities.
The message behind the book is simple: young people with disabilities can be highly talented, valuable, and good decision makers, as well as worthy and strong members of society, and nobody with a disability should be overlooked or taken for granted. The most important thing we can do to increase awareness of the difficulties faced by people with disabilities is to engage in a broad and open dialogue and increase our lines of communication. How should this workbook be distributed so it gets into the hands of as many individuals as possible?