[AI] independence and mobility

dinesh shukla dineshshukla2815 at gmail.com
Tue Sep 28 09:27:03 EDT 2010

I support your oopinion. We should be more brave and develop the skill to 
fase these kind of challenges.
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jean Parker" <radioforever at gmail.com>
To: <accessindia at accessindia.org.in>
Sent: Monday, September 27, 2010 12:54 AM
Subject: [AI] independence and mobility

> All:
> Being independent in one's mobility does not mean never utilizing the 
> assistance of others.  Actually, it means quite the opposite.  To be 
> independently mobile, one uses one's mobility skills which might include, 
> cane, listening, asking for and using information about one's location, 
> having back-up plans in case the first plan doesn't work, employing 
> strategies to get where you want to go and, at times, requesting and 
> receiving assistance from others.  The thing that makes you independent is 
> that you make the decisions about where you will go, when you will go, who 
> else will go, what you will do when you get there, and how you will get 
> there.  It doesn't mean, nor has it ever meant, never asking for 
> assistance from others.
> It does mean gauging one's environment based on what you know about it and 
> employing the mobility skills and available assistance that best fits the 
> situation.  But the key is that YOU decide, no one else decides for you.
> It might interest you to know that while blind people in the United States 
> often pride themselves on using good cane technique and navigating to 
> unknown locations "by themselves,"  this does not mean not asking for and 
> receiving assistance.  The environment there is much different than it is 
> here.  You should also know, that many blind people in the United States 
> find themselves in the difficult situation of attending large events and 
> having no assistance available to them at times when they really need it. 
> This is both a practical issue and a cultural one.  It asks the question 
> of how each person defines independence and how do they implement their 
> beliefs in everyday life.  It also raises the question of how we judge 
> each other's mobility skills and/or preferences.  This is an ongoing 
> debate among blind people which will probably not be completed in any of 
> our lifetimes.
> We can not always apply the mobility strategies used in the west here in 
> India or in most other developing countries.  But we can adapt much of the 
> philosophy that has emerged in the west and adjust the techniques to meet 
> our individual needs.
> Finally, having traveled widely in many parts of the world, the strategies 
> I use to get where I want to go are always flexible as to the environment, 
> language, time of day, culture and a million other factors that are beyond 
> the scope of this list.  The strategies I use in India are often different 
> than the one's I use in America or Europe but the end result is that I 
> still get where I want to go and I am in control of the process.
> Jean
> Voice your thoughts in the blog to discuss the Rights of persons with 
> disability bill at:
> http://www.accessindia.org.in/harish/blog.htm
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