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July 1, 2024 11 mins

As we enter Disability Pride month, we check in with some stats about the intersection of women and disability.

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Episode Transcript

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Speaker 1 (00:05):
Hey, this is Annie and Samantha. Welcome to stuff. I'll
never told you prodectn of I heart you. And as
this comes out, it will be July first, twenty twenty four,

which is the first day of Disability Pride months, So
we wanted to kick that off with just some statistics.
I'm sure we'll have more topics to discuss, but I
just wanted to look into it because I don't know
that we've ever We've done episodes on disability Pride and
disability obviously, but I wasn't sure what the current state

of statistics were, so I wanted to talk about that.
With that content warning for domestic violence, rape, sexual assaults,
and eugenics, we're not going to get two in depth
into any of those things, but that is a part
of the statistics unfortunately. So here we go from you

and women. It is estimated that one in five women
live with a disability. Women with disabilities experience various types
of impairments, including physical, psychological, intellectual, and sensory conditions that
may or may not come with functional limitations. In addition,
the diversity of women with disabilities includes those with multiple
and intersecting identities across all contexts such as ethnic, religious,

and racial backgrounds, their status has refugee, migrant, asylum seeking
and internally displaced women, LGBTQ plus identity, age, marital status,
and living with or being affected by HIV. From the
CDC quote, about thirty six million women in the US
have disabilities and the number is growing. About forty four

percent of those age sixty five years or older are
living with disability. The most common cause of disability for
women is arthritis are rheumatism. So I think something to
keep in mind with a lot of these statistics is
we have talked a lot about just in general, how
women and marginalized people are not always taken seriously as

patients when they come in with things, and that has
led to really long delays in getting something diagnosed. It's
also led to potentially death. But also on top of that,
unfortunately we're seeing in a lot of countries, not just
the US, kind of slashing of healthcare, and a lot

of that centers around disability. So from now quote, women
with disabilities are particularly disadvantaged when it comes to wage equality.
In twenty twenty two, women who are disabled seventy two
cents for every dollar paid to a man who is disabled.
Compared to the non disabled community, women with disabilities made

sixty eight cents to every dollar earned to able bodied
men If an individual from this community is seeking employment.
The current hiring rate of women with disabilities between the
ages of sixteen to sixty four stands at thirty seven percent.
Throughout the employment process, women can face challenges ranging from
organizational readiness and inclusivity to accessible employment processes and workplace

inclusivity provisions. And here's another one from American Progress. According
to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the CDC,
disability affects one four black people in the United States. However,
getting a clear picture of what it's like to live
with a disability or as a person of color can
be difficult, due in large part to the fact data

collection on these issues is limited and inconsistent. The data
that are available show African Americans are are more likely
to have a disability than white people, as well as
that the disability appears to have greater impacts on them.
Both black people and disabled people face barriers to education
and employment that limit their earning potential. According to the

National Disability Institute, people with disabilities are twice as likely
to live in poverty than people without disabilities, and nearly
forty percent of African Americans with disabilities live in poverty.
Even after adjusting for education levels, disabled African Americans are
more likely to live in poverty than other people with disabilities.

So there's the economic impact. But then there's something else
we've also talked about before, which is the sexual violence
domestic violence impact that intersects with disability. So, going back
to now quote, about one in four women have experienced contact,

sexual violence, physical violence, and or stalking by an intimate
partner during their lifetime, research has shown that women with
disability are more likely to experience intimate partner violence than
those without disability. In fact, researchers found that compared to
women without a disability, women with a disability were significantly
more likely to report experiencing each form of intimate partner

violence measured, which includes rape, sexual violence other than rape,
physical violence, stocking, psychological aggression, and control of reproductive or
sexual health. And here's a quote from the WHO, the
World Health Organization. One systematic review of found greater risk
of intimate partner violence for women with disabilities compared with
those without. While another also found higher rates of sexual violence.

So that brings us to the intersection of reproductive rights
and disability And obviously there's a lot of turmoil around
reproductive rights in the United States right now and in
a lot of countries right now. As always, listeners, if
you can write in what's going on in your area,

we would love to hear from you, because it is
a lot happening very quickly, it feels like. But here
is a quote from American Progress. Reproductive and disability justice
are both human rights based frameworks that at their core
share fundamental similarities. They both prioritize the right to bodily
autonomy and self determination, the right to raise children if

one chooses to have them with dignity and in a
safe environment, the right to access the healthcare one needs
free from political interference or stigmatization, and the right to
community care. Yet, even with such overlaps, the reproductive justice
and disability justice movements have rarely interacted due to misunderstanding
and miscommunication, particularly around abortion. Through the leadership of LGBT,

black and Indigenous activist and visionaries, reproductive and disability justice
communities are reframing the conversation to be more inclusive of
multi marginalized individuals. Exploring the intersection of the disability and
reproductive justice communities is not only necessary to better understand
how current societal structures hinder or restrict people with disabilities

from making reproductive health decisions that are right for them,
but also what policy solutions must be crafted in order
to ensure reproductive justice is a reality for all. And
then now goes on to go into yes, the fact
that abortion cares being restricted or banned in several states,

and that for women with a disability, pregnancy or the
ability to access abortions can be very life or death.
It's not necessarily a choice but the only option. And
also that because there is this higher rate of sexual

assault that we discussed, that it could impact even further
this community, which is very very important. But also remember
we've talked about this before, reproductive justice does not only
equal abortion, especially when we look at the history of
forced sterilization that particularly impacted women and extra particularly women

of color with disabilities. So here's a quote from American Progress.
The reproductive rights movement has historically fought for the legal
right to abortion in connection to disability. This has occurred
in an environment dense with misinformation and stigma about pre
needle diagnoses of disability, disability selective abortions, which are based

on a diagnosis of disability before birth, are fueled in
part by eugenics, with ablest assumptions about disability and lifespan,
quality of life, and the desirability of raising a disabled child,
among others. I think when we talk about intersexual feminism,

this is so important and why this disability pride is important,
and why we need to have these conversations and why
we need to talk about these intersections because as we
discussed in past episodes and in our book People with Disabilities,
which by the way, there is an ongoing conversation of

how preferred terminology, So I just want to acknowledge that,
but that it is the largest marginalized community in the
world that can impact anybody, whether it's temporarily or permanently.
So I think this is so important to keep in

mind these intersectional numbers and keep in mind this history,
and not to involve people who should be involved in conversations,
decision making conversations, because as we know, this is a
big election year, not just for the US but for
a lot of places, and with everything that's going on,

it's really important that we not leave people out of
conversations like this that should be the ones leading. So yeah,
just wanted to go over some of those statistics because
I was just curious and there are a lot of
resources out there for people who want to look more

into it, and I'm sure, as I said, we'll be
coming back and doing more episodes, but for now, we
just wanted to kickstart this month with this short Monday
Many and if you have any thoughts about this or
any resources you want to share. If you're from other
places in the world and you have thoughts or experiences,

please let us known. Email us at stuff at Media,
mom Stuff at iHeartMedia dot com. You can find us
on Twitter at mom Stuff Podcast or Instagram and TikTok
and stuff I Never Told You for us on YouTube.
We have a tea public store, and we have a
book you can get wherever you get your books. Thanks,
it's always to your super ducer Chestine, our executive producer
Maa andwer coontruder Joey, thank you, and thanks to you
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