Idiot = 2 years
Imbecile = 2-7 years
Moron = 7-12 years
These words may read as harsh and wrong however, these were the actual psychological terms that were used just over 50 years ago! That’s incredible how these terms that are now seen as derogatory were once used to label vulnerable children and adults.
There was also a long time in history before these words were realised to be derogatory and better care was achieved by interventions and the health service:
- Segregation in low standard environments. This saw the start of Eugenics: in other words they don’t believe that people with disabilities or disorders should populate due to their genetics being “abnormal”
Eugenics is a set of beliefs and practices that aims at improving the genetic quality of the human population
- Professional treatments in segregated environments.
- Cared for in hospitals by nurse under the supervision of doctors. (Didn’t go all too well)
- They had the view that intellectual disabilities were incurable and therefore shouldn’t try help.
- Holy innocent
- The former treatments were not wholly helpful as they became violent and disrespectful for those under their care.
- A charity was set up to see that this didn’t continue to happen
- Eternal child
- Dignity and respect as small children
- However the institutions still had no personality (no decoration and communal clothing)
Object of pity, burden of charity
- viewed as unproductive
- children with downs syndrome were still thought of as economic risk for vital heart surgery
Social Deviance Menace
- genetic research
- petitions objecting to new community services because of danger
- women with intellectual disabilities were still being “steralised” so that they wouldn’t reproduce
Sociological Deprived Minority
- PEOPLE FIRST – Normalisation
- right to be in society
- applied behaviour analysis
- right to education until 19y
- environments adapted for learning
The route to the current views and interventions for people with intellectual disabilities has been a complicated and gruelling process and were still not in a place where we can be happy about the care. There is still a long way to go and in the last year or so there were reports of a scandal at Winterbourne View care home with carers taking advantage of the patients to the extent of abuse. This came in less that 20 years of the promise in 1980 that al institutions would be closed down and all people in need would be given the care they needed.