Dis/Ability: A discussion on creating more accessible employment for disabled assistance dog trainers.

Talks

I presented a paper presentation concerning this study at ICI Berlin in September of 2020 at a Conference entitled "Assistance Dogs: Care and Interdependence".

Watch my talk here!

Introduction

This paper initiates a dialogue around creating more inclusive employment opportunities for disabled assistance dog trainers by questioning potential challenges and benefits for nonhuman and human actors within the assistance dog sector. 

Discourse

There are disabled individuals who can and do lead successful careers as assistance dog trainers. However, the percentage of disabled trainers, internationally, is significantly lower than that of their able-bodied counterparts.  Some disabled trainers might offer each individual assistance dog more empathy and attention than trainers can offer (able-bodied or otherwise) - especially those working for larger schools. Deaf clients, for example, and their assistance dogs, may benefit from working with a deaf trainer by improving communication and potentially acting as a source of inspiration for their clients.