This last weekend I have discovered Maxabella’s ‘I’m grateful for’ Bloghop. Over the weekend I have being reading some really interesting blogs and posts. What came to be last night was how grateful I was that I had found this bloghop and was able to read such interesting posts from talented bloggers from around the world. For some reason it made me think about a conversation that I had a couple of weeks ago with LittleMan’s speech therapist. She told me about the Communication Bill of Rights and it made me think about communication as a skill (or group of skills) and as a human right.
Communication … to get technical receptive and expression communication .. is something that I know I take for granted everyday. I love it. I love reading, writing and could talk under water for hours. The ability to communicate is so central to my identity that I find it hard to think about a situation where I could not communicate. However there are many people in this world where this is not possible and this right is not respected or delivered upon. And this not just people that live in far-away 3rd world countries with limited access to education caused by war, famine and poverty (not to diminish the plight of people in 3rd world countries) … but here in Australia, in the US, in Europe & the UK.
So today I am grateful for my ability communicate. I am grateful that I can write this blog and express my views to everyone and be able to read and understand your comments. My wish is that the ability to communicate be recognized as a fundamental human right and that be something that everyone in the world could be grateful for ..
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash
All people have the following specific communication rights in their daily interactions. These rights are summarized from the Communication Bill of Rights put forth in 1992 by the National Joint Committee for the Communication Needs of Persons with Severe Disabilities.
Each person has the right to
- request desired objects, actions, events and people
- refuse undesired objects, actions, or events
- express personal preferences and feelings
- be offered choices and alternatives
- reject offered choices
- request and receive another person’s attention and interaction
- ask for and receive information about changes in routine and environment
- receive intervention to improve communication skills
- receive a response to any communication, whether or not the responder can fulfill the request
- have access to AAC (augmentative and alternative communication) and other AT (assistive technology) services and devices at all times
- have AAC and other AT devices that function properly at all times
- be in environments that promote one’s communication as a full partner with other people, including peers
- be spoken to with respect and courtesy
- be spoken to directly and not be spoken for or talked about in the third person while present
- have clear, meaningful and culturally and linguistically appropriate communications
From the National Joint Committee for the Communicative Needs of Persons with Severe Disabilities. (1992). Guidelines for meeting the communication needs of persons with severe disabilities. Asha, 34(Suppl. 7), 2–3.