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Discrimination, ableism and racism hurt but inclusion can heal: Listening to the intersectional lived experience of youth with disabilities and co-creating solutions 

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Project Information

Discrimination, ableism and racism hurt but inclusion can heal: Listening to the intersectional lived experience of youth with disabilities and co-creating solutions is a 3-year community-based research partnership, focusing on the complexities of the lived experience of youth with disabilities and how disabilities intersect with race, ethnicity and gender. Dr. Sally Lindsay, senior scientist at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital (Holland Bloorview)- TRAIL Lab, is leading the team in this project with the overall goal of removing barriers and disparities for youth with disabilities, especially marginalized and racialized youth.

This project will draw on an intersectional approach with community-based collaborations to foster the co-creation of new knowledge, capacity building and knowledge mobilization on critical issues related to discrimination, ableism, and systemic racism of under-represented or disadvantaged groups (i.e., youth with disabilities).

Funding for this project is provided by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Partnership Grant. Matched funding is provided by the Kimel Family Opportunities Fund through the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation.

 

Why is it important to focus on this topic?

  • Experiences of discrimination and racism are often from the perspectives of adults with disabilities. When research is focused on children, it is typically from the perspective of families or service providers
  • Of the limited research addressing race, ethnicity and youth with disabilities, the majority of studies include white participants with a lack of meaningful attention to the intersection of disability, racial ethnic and gender minority groups
  • Research on the intersection between disability and other multiple forms of stigmatizing characteristics and identities (e.g., gender, poverty) is lacking

 

Project Goals

  • To work towards removing barriers and disparities for youth with disabilities, especially marginalized and racialized (i.e., social processes constructing races as different and unequal in ways that matter to economic, political, and social life) youth
  • To inform more relevant programs, policies and practices to enhance the inclusion and well-being of young people with disabilities 
  • To seek and conceptualize and frame the social and cultural inequities that influence the diverse lived experiences of youth with disabilities and identify the drivers of such inequities along with potential solutions that address inequities and optimize well-being

 

Project Objectives 

  • To explore the diverse lived experiences of youth with disabilities and the intersection of disability with race, ethnicity and gender 
  • To explore the causes and persistence of systemic discrimination, racism and ableism experienced by youth with disabilities 
  • To understand what shifts to policy and practice that maybe needed, including resources deployed and barriers removed, to ensure that youth with disabilities thrive in all their diversity 
  • To prioritize and co-create solutions that can enhance the social inclusion and well-being for youth with disabilities 

 

Our team at the time the funding was awarded 

Principal Investigator
Dr. Sally Lindsay

Co-investigators
Dr. Jennifer Stinson
Dr. Mahadeo Sukhai
Dr. Nicole Thomson
Dr. Sharon Smile

Collaborators
Cathy Persons
Geoff Feldman
Dr. Melissa Fellin
Nathan Gaba 
Owen Hinds (Mabel Afriyie) 
Dr. Mahadeo Sukhai
Michelle McClure
Shauna Beaudoin

Staff
Sharmigaa Ragunathan, Research Coordinator

Postdoctoral Fellows and Students
Kristina Fuentes-Aiello, Postdoctoral fellow
Yiyan Li, Postdoctoral fellow

Where are we now?

We are currently in the first phase of our project. Specifically, we are currently recruiting participants for the following study:

 

We are looking for

  • Youth with a disability
  • Aged 15-24 years old
  • Identify as belonging to a racial, ethnic or gender minority group
  • Able to communicate in English or with the help of an interpreter (can be provided by the study upon request)
Discrimination, Ableism, Racism and Lived Experiences of people with disabilities (DARE) Research Alliance 

The Discrimination, Ableism, Racism and Lived Experiences of people with disabilities (DARE) is a network of researchers and knowledge users focused on addressing ableism through collaboration, knowledge synthesis and sharing. Consider joining our Research Alliance to:

  • Collaborate with others in your field 
  • Share resources and expertise
  • Inform knowledge translation products and support implementation 
  • Join our webinar series 

 

For more information and/or to join our DARE Research Alliance, please contact Sally Lindsay (slindsay@hollandbloorview.ca). 

Thank you to our funders 

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) logo

 

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) logo

 

Matched funding provided by the Kimel Family Opportunities Fund through the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation


Thank you to our partners 

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital logo

 

University of Toronto logo

 

CNIB Foundation logo

 

Hydrocephalus Canada logoAbility Online logo

 

Bloom Child Therapy logo