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Privacy Issues and Disabled Persons, by Joanne R. Pompano

Guide Entry to 00.03.06:

Our privacy and confidentiality rights seem increasingly to be challenged. Many experts believe that the threat to privacy is greatly increased in this age of information where personal and business data can be linked, transferred, shared and sold, usually without knowledge or consent of individuals involved.

The right of privacy is also a very important issue for handicapped individuals. For some persons who are disabled, threats to privacy and confidentiality are problems that they deal with on a daily basis.

Privacy issues that are of special concern to handicapped people include:

l. the control of computerized data concerning their disability including distribution of this information to employers, associates, government agencies and merchandisers

2. the desire not to be compelled to give information to government bodies, employers, and merchants about their handicapped and medications they may be taking because of their handicaps

3. the desire to have unimpeded rights about reproduction, including decisions as to whether fetuses should be tested and corrected for handicaps

4. the special problems of confidentiality in school settings

Developed for students in grades 11-12, this unit will allow handicapped students and their non-handicapped peers to explore issues of privacy as they pertain to the disabled persons.

(Recommended for Special Education, History, Law, and Social Studies, grades 11-12.)

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