Change the name of the Trinidad and Tobago Association for Retarded Children immediately!
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The Trinidad and Tobago Association for Retarded Children needs to change the name of the association to a more socially acceptable one. When you continue using derogatory and offensive language towards any particular group of persons, it continues to add to the devaluation of the human life standing before everyone.
Persons with disabilities, particularly intellectual disabilities were historically seen as sub-human and were treated as such. In fact the outdated language still exists in legislation right here in Trinidad and Tobago.
We sometimes still hear people referring to persons with physical disabilities as “crippled”, “handicapped”, and those with intellectual challenges as “retarded”.
The understanding that the person with the intellectual disability is a HUMAN BEING with feelings and rights just as anyone else is at the forefront of the shift in attitudes toward this beautiful group of humans. We can shape and influence the way others see, treat and even accept us through the use of words.
Everything in this world is a construct designed to keep us living in the Matrix, believing that one group of people is better than another, that one religious belief system is better than the other, that the majority who function typically are better than those who don’t, when really it comes down to power.
In the end, whether your child was neuro-typical or neuro-diverse, typical or intellectually challenged, physically typical or physically challenged, what will matter and what will remain are the belief systems we teach our children about the value of the lives before them.
In an ever changing world we each have a personal responsibility to use our words wisely. The Organisations representing our children have the same responsibility because they can influence the families they interact with as well as the corporations and other citizens they interact with.
Influencing the society through campaigning is an ongoing process that will in the long run impact on the quality of life our children have. Change the name and influence attitudes.
The Lady Hochoy Home was established legislatively through an Act of Parliament over 50 years ago. Presently the only way to change the name of the Trinidad and Tobago Association for Retarded Children is for the Parliament to dissolve the name through a Parliamentarian tabling this change for discussion and dissolution within the Parliament. Your support can be added to our voices and those of the TTARC to help get this name change happening quickly.
My name is Laura Escayg and I am the Co-founder of Cause An Effect Organisation and A Very Special Disabilities Forum in Trinidad and Tobago. My husband Francis and I are the proud parents of a 14 year old severely disabled son named Isaiah and he has influenced us to become agents of change through our NGO Cause An Effect that is focused on transforming perspectives about disabilities through ongoing campaigning, building both social enterprises and in the future, sustainable assisted living communities for families of persons with disabilities. Find us at www.causeaneffect.co and on Facebook at Cause An Effect and A Very Special Disabilities Forum.
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