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Disability, Displacement and Public Health: A Vision for Haiti

Gregor Wolbring
Canadian Journal of Public Health / Revue Canadienne de Santé Publique
Vol. 102, No. 2 (March/April 2011), pp. 157-159
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41995573
Page Count: 3
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Disability, Displacement and Public Health: A Vision for Haiti
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Abstract

Refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) with disabilities are some of the most neglected and socially excluded groups within any population. Natural disasters are events that cause bodily harm resulting in disability and that result in the displacement of people. Many predict a continual increase of natural disasters in the future due to changing climates. People with disabilities constitute one of the most vulnerable social groups in the case of a natural disaster. In 2010, Haiti suffered a devastating earthquake leading to great social, health and economic hardship including the displacement of people with disabilities. Due to the very extent of the structural devastation Haiti experienced and the international focus on assisting Haitians who suffered injuries leading to disabilities, there is an opportunity for Haiti to become a model for future disaster management in terms of mainstreaming the needs of people with disabilities in the restoration, resettlement and reintegration process. Les réfugiés et les personnes déplacées à l'intérieur de leur propre pays qui ont aussi une incapacité sont parmi les groupes les plus négligés et les plus socialement exclus dans n'importe quelle population. Les catastrophes naturelles sont des événements qui causent des blessures corporelles incapacitantes et des déplacements de populations. De nombreuses voix prédisent une augmentation constante des catastrophes naturelles en raison du changement climatique. Les personnes handicapées sont l'un des groupes sociaux les plus vulnérables lors d'une catastrophe naturelle. Le tremblement de terre qui a dévasté Haïti en 2010 a entraîné d'énormes difficultés sociales, sanitaires et économiques, dont le déplacement de personnes handicapées. Étant donné l'ampleur de la dévastation des infrastructures et la mobilisation internationale pour aider les Haïtiens ayant subi des blessures invalidantes, Haïti pourrait devenir un modèle pour la gestion des catastrophes futures en intégrant les besoins des personnes handicapées dans le processus de restauration, de réinstallation et de réintégration.

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