Children with disabilities have often become victims of bullying. Their physical and developmental vulnerability, intellectual, emotional or sensory defects, and social skill handicap are some of the factors that increase discrimination and intimidation among other children.
Parents play the most important role in educating their children about disabilities. Teaching them that being different is okay. Injuries can happen, deformities or abnormalities maybe exceptional but must be accepted and understood. Proper explanation is needed for children to develop appreciation and respect for individuals who are different than them.
Statistics show that many school children with disabilities are facing challenges in academic environment which directly impact their education. Moreover, victims of bullying can suffer from several side effects which may vary from short to lifelong term. Because bullying involves spiteful acts, words, or other oppressive behaviour intended to hurt somebody else, its consequences manifest reduced appetite, depression, anger, socializing difficulties, lower self-esteem, humiliation and, when worse comes to worst, suicidal thoughts.
Education is one of the best tools to break the cycle of unfairness that children with disabilities habitually encounter. Schools should look into this matter seriously through implementing appropriate policies to ensure that all children are learning in a safe and healthy environment and enjoy their basic human rights without discrimination. Additionally, civil rights laws protect students with disabilities against harassment.
Neighborhood associations should also take part to increase awareness about disabilities and bullying as they discuss ideas concerning the problems, organize activities and needs of the neighborhood.
Nowadays, there are a lot of child development professionals, therapists and counselors giving their best advice on how to effectively educate young children about disabilities and those that suffer with them.
“The best advice I can give, is that every child wants friends, love and happiness. This is despite any disability. Also, tell your children this and to try to think of this, with every child that has a disability and more importantly to spread the word. Attitudes can be contagious, even good ones.” – Natalie West of Children Home Society.