We are starting a new disability series: DisConnect with Lotus.
Every week we will keep the conversation around disability going to educate, spread awareness, and share insights from the Lotus community.
Let’s start with disability, in the broadest sense.
Around 1.3 billion people worldwide identify as having some form of disability. This makes it the largest, most diverse, equity-deserving group. One that we will all be part of at some point, whether permanently or temporarily.
In 2001, the World Health Organization (WHO) outlined 3 dimensions of disability:
1) Anatomical (impairment or difference in body functions and structure)
2) Functional (difficulty completing daily living activities)
3) Social (barriers to leisure, employment, healthcare, education, transportation)
This is at the global level. Disability as it is defined on paper.
At the individual level, self-defining is an important, often ongoing, process. It may or may not align the WHO definition completely, but it does align with personal experience. And no two people experience disability in the same way.
Disability is prevalent, but also deeply personal. Folks with disabilities are experts of their own lived experiences. So, let’s honour that!