Summary of “Banana slicers and pre-peeled oranges: “useless” products can help people with disabilities”

Help may also take a human face: Personal care assistants, aides, home health attendants, and other direct service professionals are vital, though there’s also a heavy social expectation that family members provide unpaid caregiving labor, a practice many people with disabilities oppose along with other exploitative labor practices.
Kim Sauder, a disability scholar and advocate, notes that people with disabilities may not want to be forced to wait for help with tasks like peeling oranges; there’s something very dehumanizing about the thought of just wanting a snack and being stymied by a rind you can’t remove on your own.
Many people with disabilities complain that these assessments tend to understate the amount of care they need, taking a “Budget-driven” approach.
Some of the most useful products for people with disabilities weren’t developed with them in mind Products like the banana slicer, pizza shears, or similar items, says Hartley, can be especially useful for people who can’t safely or comfortably use knives.
These universal design practices are something people with disabilities are aware of.
People with disabilities themselves often end up filling the gaps for those who haven’t or can’t access professional services.
Sauder notes, for example, that a tweet making fun of peeled and packaged oranges has gained notoriety multiple times, even after people with disabilities have criticized the sentiment behind the original “Joke.” Each time it pops up in Sauder’s timeline under a new name, it goes viral all over again.
It’s not just that people with disabilities have a use for items like these and are tired of hearing that they’re wasteful or silly: When the need for such products is called into question, it can exacerbate social divides that contribute to larger policy issues that keep people with disabilities from public life, whether it’s the frenzied call for straw bans, claims that complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act is too onerous, or applying work requirements to Medicaid.

The orginal article.