Supporting Asian Deaf Young People and their Families: The role of professionals and services
MetadataShow full item record
This paper discusses how Asian deaf young people and their families engage with welfare provision. Our findings, based on group and individual interviews with young deaf people and individual interviews with their parents, explore the assumptions underlying current provision and how they influence the options available to young people and their families. The paper suggests that the welfare state exerts a form of social control where professional help, although well intended, may disempowers Asian deaf people by privileging 'oralism' over sign language, and western norms over other cultural values. On the other hand, positive constructions of deafness privilege Deaf identity while failing to accommodate ethnic or religious diversity, resulting in Asian deaf young people and their families having an ambivalent relationship with the Deaf community. We argue that services need to recognise and address the reasons for this ambivalence if they are to adequately engage Asian deaf people and their families.