Objective and Scope
OBJECTIVE : To establish a platform of professionals for generating functional information related to work on disabilities and impairment in the Indian context. The journal also seeks to promote effective inclusive development and the restoration of dignity of Persons with Disabilities.
SCOPE: The Journal ‘Disabilities & Impairment’, established in 1987, has endeavoured through all these years to promote research studies, publish innovative strategies of grassroots level work and other academic studies related to disability and impairment. The Journal’s work aims to remove barriers faced by the disabled and impaired and bring them within the folds of inclusive society. It further advocates equal opportunity and full participation of all individuals in societal and economic functioning irrespective of activity limitations.
The credentials of the Journal include publishing over 600 internationally and nationally acclaimed research papers, covering a diverse range of topics including preventive health issues of early child care, drug abuse, lifestyle ailments, stress management, adverse environmental impact, old age care and so on. The journal has also supported a series of noteworthy training work on capacity buildings under Prof Arun K. Sen and Prof Madhulekha Bhattacharya in collaboration with nationally reputed institutes.
The Journal has initiated innovative field-based work in conjunction with the Indian armed forces involving local community workers and professionals of national institutes of rehabilitation. This work is conducted in the country’s under-served and border regions, including the North East, the remote Little Andaman Island, the high altitude and snow bound areas of Pir Panjal and Batalik of Jammu & Kashmir, and Kargil in the Union Territory of Ladakh. This is aimed at connecting rehabilitation professionals with those in need at their door step level, and delivering advanced Indian assistive devices under the flagship mission “Ability Beyond Disability” in collaborations with the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India. This strategic effort has created an opportunity for research scholars, academics, rehabilitation trainers and others to obtain first hand primary inputs that are crucial for the implementation of inclusive development work. The Government of India’s Niti Ayog has acknowledged this mission’s achievements as an example of sterling professional performance.
People’s participation is vital for mainstreaming persons with disabilities. Towards this end, the Journal highlights problems at the societal level through a unique column titled “Behind the Headlines’. Here, accounts of success stories not covered in the news are highlighted and elaborated. This provides a deeper understanding of real-life experiences faced by disabled soldiers of the Indian armed forces as well as civilians with disabilities.
The success stories of ordinary citizens with disabilities and paraplegic Indian soldiers epitomise the power of human determination and courage. These stories demonstrate how even the most challenged persons can defeat all odds to rise above their situation and convert setback into opportunities. Their success highlights the responsibility of all citizens in strengthening the state apparatus to empower one and all.
The “Rights of Persons With Disabilities Act, 2016” is a milestone in the struggle for equal opportunities for disabled people in India. This Act constitutes a paradigm shift in thinking about disability and turns it from a social welfare concern to a human rights issue. In the Act, the types of disabilities have been increased from the existing 7 to 21. The disabled and impaired have also been accorded additional benefits in the fields of education, jobs and poverty alleviation schemes. A further impetus has been given to ensure accessibility to public buildings (both Government and private) within a prescribed time-frame to ease the mobility of differently abled people.
The journal from its early days sought to focus on various issues, including health, social and environment impact, palliative measures, rehabilitation and so on associated with the conditions of disability and impairment. This was much before the time these issues received widespread public attention. The journal therefore was visionary and instrumental in spreading awareness of the problem, encouraging the development of solutions and aiding governmental efforts.
Therefore, the journal can rightfully claim that it’s activities and thrust was one factor responsible for the enactment of the nation’s first disability legislation, namely the Persons with Disabilities (PWD) Act, 1995. Since then, the journal has strongly advocated the concepts of self-reliance and self-sufficiency incorporated in the message of Atmanirbhar Bharat in the sphere of disabilities and impairment.
The journal today aims at taking a step into the digital future by upgrading its website, disseminating its research through the online media and developing a network of organisations working in the field. As we work for a new resurgent future, we seek the support of the public, NGOs as well as the government in carrying our goal further.