Welfare Policies in Relation to People with Disabilities: A Cross-Cultural Perspective [Insert Your Name Here] [Insert Your Institution’s Name Here] [Insert Your Course Name and Number Here] April 3, 2011 Table of Contents Introduction 3 Cross-Cultural Approach 3 Historical Perspective 4 Scope and Obstacles of Welfare Policies 5 Specific Examples 6 Common Welfare Policy Reasoning 8 Social Context 9 A Matter of Human Rights 10 Britain’s Fit Notes 10 Relationship between Disabilities and Poverty 11 The Structure of Public Services 12 Structure at the State Level 12 Structure at the Country Level 13 In-Depth Exploration of Trends 14 Competencies as a Factor 14 Differentiation 15 Conclusion 1…
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The key characteristics of these policies are their strong dependency on the financial status of each particular country. From this perspective, developed countries are most likely to develop effective welfare policies for people with disabilities—compared to third-world and developing countries. However, problems and delays are identified in the development of these policies in practice. Most commonly, the welfare policies for people with disabilities focus on what these people cannot do, rather than on what they can do. Cross-Cultural Approach The level at which welfare policies address the needs of people with disabilities, refers to the obstacles that these people must overcome. It also aims to show the reason the policies referring to the needs, and the rights, of people with disabilities are based on these peoples’ inabilities and not on their potential and capabilities. Thus, the specific strategy, using this criterion for developing welfare policies for people with disabilities can be explained using multiple approaches. These strategies significantly vary from one country to another. However, similarities exist on which the relevant explanations can be based. Another notable discovery of this study is the expanding trend of focus on inabilities because specific interests are served, as explained analytically below. It should also be mentioned that the criteria used by legislators when developing policies related to the interests of people with disabilities is not standardized; the political characteristics of each country—as these characteristics are not constant over time—are of crucial importance for deciding on the terms under which disabled people will be supported (Combat Poverty Agency 1994, p. 114; Chaudhary 2006, p. 12). Moreover, often the reasons for which welfare policies are implemented are independent from political trends and social ethics within a given country. For instance, when these policies are applied across a particular organization, the criteria on which these policies are based cannot be controlled using the common ethical rules. This issue is also explored, at the level that it helps to understand this trend. Historical Perspective The welfare policies developed within each society are usually related to local social needs and culture; however, infrastructure available for the relevant policies has also historically been considered to play a critical role in deciding the welfare policies that would be most appropriate for a specific country. On the other hand, an increase in the number of people with disabilities, not participatory in the workforce, leads to the assumption that more funds are required for their financial support (Cousins, 2007, p. 252). The identification of these funds can be a challenging task for a government—particularly in periods of financial crisis and in countries that face severe financial turbulences. For instance, as of October 2010, the World Bank reports disbursements totalling “a record $81 billion—
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