Decades after the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, there is one section of the disabled population that continues to face blatant prejudice. Disabled parents often find that they may lose child custody, because authorities don’t believe that they’re capable of caring for the child.
The National Council on Disability recently released a report which indicates the widespread prejudice that parents with disabilities face as they try to raise their children. The report listed a number of ways in which disabled parents face discrimination.
According to the National Council on Disability, approximately one in 10 children in the United States has a parent with a disability. In spite of those large numbers of parents who are successfully raising children, there is a widespread prejudice that parents who have any kind of disability should not be raising children at all. That kind of attitude has meant severe heartbreak for parents with disabilities who do not understand the basis of this discrimination.
According to the National Council on Disability report, parents with disabilities often find that they face discrimination when it comes to family law courts and child welfare-related issues. These people may also not have much access to fertility treatment options, and may be down the priority list when it comes to adoption opportunities.
In fact, according to the report, parents with psychiatric or intellectual disabilities fare much poorer than those with physical disabilities. These parents lose their children at a rate of 80%. This includes parents with conditions like autism.
What parents with disabilities need is a solid support network that can help them perform their duties and discharge their responsibilities safely and effectively.