Click for the BBB Business Review of this Disabled Person Assistance in North York ON

Abuse in Canada’s Disability Community

August 18, 2014

What-Causes-Schizoaffective-DisorderIt can seem distasteful to discuss abuse and neglect in Canada’s disability community. Regardless of the discomfort people feel when addressing such an issue, it is necessary we bring up the painful topic.

Statistically speaking, many Canadians with disabilities face physical and emotional abuse every day. To put a stop to this torturous reality, awareness needs to grow throughout Canada and people of all ability levels need to speak up.

Throughout this week, we will publish posts that address different types of abuse, causes of abuse, signs of abuse, and tips on how to prevent abuse.

Before we get to these important topics, it is necessary that we understand the prevalence of abuse in Canada’s disability community so we can equip ourselves with tools to recognize and abolish it.

Here are some important statistics about abuse in Canada’s disability community:

  • “In Canada there are approximately 1,900,000 women aged 15 and over who have disabilities. It is estimated that approximately 40 per cent of these women with disabilities will be assaulted, sexually assaulted or abused throughout their lifetime.” (Newfoundland Labrador Fact Sheet)
  • “A survey conducted by DAWN (Disabled Women’s Network) Canada of approximately 250 women with disabilities found that 40% of the respondents had been raped, abused or assaulted and 53% of women who had been disabled from birth or early childhood had been abused.” (Community Living Ontario)
  • “Adults who have an intellectual disability are 2.9 times more likely to be victims of physical assault and 10.7 times more likely to be victims of sexual assault than adults without a disability.” (Community Living Ontario)
  • “It is estimated that only 20% of sexual abuse cases involving disabled people are ever reported to the police, community service agencies, or other authorities.” (DAWN Ontario, Disabled Women’s Network Ontario, 2006)
  • “Boys with disabilities or children with disabilities who are in preschool or younger are more likely than children without disabilities to be abused.” (Algood, 2011; Stalker & McArthur, 2010; Sullivan & Knutson, 2000)

These varying statistics on the abuse of people with disabilities proves that within this demographic, adults, children, males and females are at high risk of abuse. Sadly enough, these statistics only scratch the surface. There are numerous studies on the connection between disability and abuse.

Before reading this post, were you aware that abuse runs rampant throughout the disability community?

With this information in hand, it is important to guide the conversation on abuse so that we do not dwell on its sad reality. Instead, we need to think about ways we can solve this problem.

The first step in doing this is raising awareness of the problem throughout Canada. Once people across the country realize what abuse looks like, why it occurs, and who it affects, we should be able to ban together and, hopefully, create a society that is strong enough to prevent such tragedies.

People with disabilities have strong characters. Unfortunately, because of mental and physical impairments, some corrupt individuals prey on them. Therefore, it is the responsibility of all Canadians to speak up about abuse and neglect towards people with disabilities. With a united voice, we hope to stop this violence once and for all.

4 Comments. Leave new

Raymond Fulford
August 23, 2014 12:33 am

The care of the elderly, and allopathic medical care in general, is nothing but a hotbed of systemic abuse. The entire health care system is stifled with a bureaucracy that hides behind the cloak of anonymity. It is almost impossible for advocates and relatives of elderly patients to get their voice heard. The invention of the telephone answering device has contributed greatly to this growing distance between the patient and those ensconced in sinecure and uncaring positions of leadership in the healthcare industry. The privatization of so-called care-giving facilities has also led to this sad state of affairs. The aim now is not the comfort of the patient but rather the financial growth of the institution or nursing home in question. This is all a giant systemic problem which everyone agrees should be changed but which no individual has the power to turn the around. Politicians are as useless as shifting sand. They promise change but do nothing to remedy the system. Those in charge of health care facilities for the elderly are, with few exceptions, callous and uncaring. The patient is treated like a robot. There is little or no compassion or empathy for patients. Even physical abuse is rampant. Elderly people are treated more like cattle
piled in a railroad car instead of being cared for in a dignified manner. There are, of course, exceptions to the rule, but when visitors and next of kin turn their backs after visiting hours, the scene changes radically. Most of the staff are domineering and controlling. The patient, basically, has no rights and no recourse. Compare this abusive pharmaceutical-medical leviathan with that of natural medicine and its soft, compassionate approach.

How are you gonna fight abuse in canada when the government is the leading abuser, setting the stage for all other abuse of persons with disability!?!?

patrick sokoloski
August 23, 2014 6:38 am

abuse to the disabled is a huge problem always ignored by authorities,

I have experienced so much abuse in the last several years and I am disabled. Abuse from the court system when I tried to get the minimum child support in the province of Ontario the Judge said to me “you don’t look disabled” I suffer a brain injury and was also diagnosed with PTSD, Major Depressive Disorder and Chronic pain disorder but I was accused of fraud. I was told that I had to bring forth my car accident records to the court and I had to pay for this investigation. The Attorney Generals no fault insurance handled my car accident case so why was I accused of fraud during a child support hearing in Oshawa court? I have been trying to get the minimum in Ontario for fifteen years to no avail.

I had been denied disability for over ten years. After living in poverty and dangerous conditions with my children was I granted a monthly disability. The final report in appeal states that with the abuse I have been through that I will never be able to fully heal.

I was living in terrible rental conditions where five police officers from Durham region said I was in danger of the tenant in the basement. He has previously tried to kill a woman with a hammer and was just release from prison. The police came into my home and told me to get out with my children as I was in danger. I was sick, disabled, scared, but living in poverty had no where to go. I called the Beaverton homeless outreach worker and she said you only pay cheap rent so I had no right to complain or something to that effect and refused to assist me. I had to live in dangerous conditions as the five police officers left me and my girls there and I wonder why they did not offer us a shelter or a safe situation or maybe victim services.

I aslo have suffered police abuse and have written the Chief of police and they came to my home with Mcdonalds for me and asked me to sign a waiver saying it was indeed police abuse towards me. I never did get an explanation as to why two officers banged on my door demanded I step outside then be very abusive towards me. I reqret signing anything but when I look at the document they made a mistake and put down two different dates so technically that document is probably null and void and now I want this looked into.

This is just the beginning as I and my little children suffered years of abuse and I do believe an inquiry is in order. I have all documents pertaining to the above as evidence. Yes you bet I do.

Sandra Comeau

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *