New Ways of Thinking and Revolutionary Common Sense

Disability Is Natural Books and Media

What is a disability? Is there a universally-accepted definition? Some might say yes. But if we look beyond our own personal experiences and environments, as well as the DSM-IV and other official sources, we’ll understand there is not a “one-size-fits-all” disability definition. “So what?” you may be wondering. “What difference does it make?”

It makes all the difference in the world to individuals who have been labeled.

Within the service system, a label is a necessary requirement before a person can receive services. Other factors may also be considered when determining eligibility, but a label is often the first and more important factor. So a disability label is “good” in the sense that it enables a person to receive services.

But labels are very, very bad when they’re misused, and they’re misused in a variety of ways. Within the service system, a serious misuse of labels . . . Click here to continue.

Does a person always have a disability?

I say no—it’s more of a fluctuating state, based on the physical and/or social environment.

Kathie Snow

When is a Disability Not a Disability?