Disabled Needs Aren’t Special Needs



Caden Nelms, Opinions Editor

Everyone has heard the terms “special needs”. People in schools, doctors’ offices and the government all use the term. However, the term “special needs” can be very harmful to disabled people. It excludes disabled people because it makes them feel like burdens. If their needs are “special”, it means that someone has to go out of their way to meet those needs. When in fact, those needs are basic rights that should be provided and aren’t special.

Disabled people’s needs aren’t special needs. Society just isn’t built around disabled individuals’ needs. Able-bodied people have needs too. Society has just made their needs a priority and accessible because they’re not the minority in this situation. For example, stairs are a need for able-bodied people, and they are a standard for all buildings. Bathrooms, and bathroom stalls, are a need, so they’re a standard in all buildings. Family bathrooms and/or “handicap accessible” stalls aren’t always available, and if they are, they are rarely accessible. If people would simply look at needs for everyone, not just their own, they would know how to accommodate needs for all.