The Myth Buster on Independent Living is a booklet that sheds a truthful light on the most common misconceptions about disabled people, independent living and personal assistance issues through the use of colorful illustrations and a straight to the point language. It also aims at clarifying some of the myths that hold people back from getting involved. In plain words, the reader will descern what is true from what is a myth.
The following designs have been selected by ENIL staff and members, based on their lived experiences, and have been inspired by ENIL work with policy and decision makers at the European, national and local level.
MYTH: Living independently is the same as being self-sufficient.
FACT: No one is self-sufficient. Whether labelled as having a disability or not, we all require support from others at different times in our lives.
MYTH: Living independently is not for everyone. We will always need institutions.
FACT: If given the right support, everyone can live in the community.
MYTH: Independent living means having no contact with support services.
FACT:Independent living is not possible without support.
MYTH: Disabled people will be isolated and lonely if they live independently. Independent living means you have to move away from your family and live on your own.
FACT: Independent living does not mean people have to live on their own. but it requires that they have a choice of where and with whom to live.
MYTH: There are too many risks associated with living independently, so disabled people are ‘better cared for’ in institutional care. Independent living arrangements such as personal budgets are too risky for disabled people and may lead to fraud, neglect or abuse.
FACT:Institution is a far more dangerous place to live in that the community.
MYTH: Independent Living can be achieved by building group homes and day care centres for disabled people.
FACT: Disabled people are often placed in group homes and day care centres due to a lack of other support and services available.
MYTH: Independent living for everybody is too expensive.
FACT:Independent living is a human right, therefore it should not be denied in order to make savings.
MYTH: Independent living options, such as personal assistance, are not appropriate for children with disabilities.
FACT:Experience shows that children and young people, as well as their families, can greatly benefit from personal assistance.
MYTH: It is impossible to control the ‘quality’ of the independent living support options.
FACT:Because independent living allows individuals to choose their support, it is much more likely that the support will be better suited to their needs.
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Vover Photo: getty/VIKTOR DRACHEV