This past Saturday, we talked a lot about inclusion. And what is inclusion vs. mainstreaming and so on. But she said a phrase that was just another one of those “D’oh!” moments for me. I love when I have an idea or concept rolling around in my head and someone else names it for me. It helps me make room for other stuff. But here’s the phrase: Disability Tourist.
Ok, so for those of you saying “Wtf is that?” here’s some background. In the past few years a similar term called “Poverty tourism” has emerged. The idea is that you go tour an area of extreme poverty. And while it initially sounds very voyeuristic, the hope is that you walk away motivated to help change the world. Or at least the situation of the people you saw. It’s an idea becoming quite popular in slums in India, Brazil and Africa. But here’s the thing-how many of those poverty tourists are actually doing anything to facilitate change? I don’t know and can’t find any statistics to support it. But I do know that for the most part, there still is a significant portion of poverty in our world. I’m thinking that probably, most people go home, make a donation and then go on with their lives.
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