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Journal article

Any added value? Co-constructing life stories of and with people with intellectual disabilities

Author:
KOENIG Oliver
Journal article citation:
British Journal of Learning Disabilities, 40(3), September 2012, pp.213-221.
Publisher:
Wiley-Blackwell

Although there has been increased involvement of people with intellectual disability in research, they have been largely excluded from the areas of data analysis and theory development. One reason for this might be that not many people with intellectual disability have received training in research. The paper presents data from the first core research project in German-speaking countries that was carried out within an inclusive framework. The FWF (Austrian Science Fund) financed project ‘Experiences of participation in the (vocational) biography of people with intellectual disability’ at the University of Vienna aimed to look at the life stories and narratives of people with intellectual disability during transition from school to work and in working life. The project included the formation of a ‘reference group’ which aimed to involve people with intellectual disability in the process of co-construction of theory through the shared analysis of the collected qualitative data. The findings from the reference group demonstrate the ‘added value’ of including people with intellectual disability in the analysis of qualitative data. The group are shown to bring new insights that broaden the theoretical sensitivity and analytical focus and also influence the direction of further analysis.

Journal article

Commentary on ‘Deinstitutionalisation and community living for people with intellectual disabilities in Austria’

Author:
WEINBACH Hanna
Journal article citation:
Tizard Learning Disability Review, 14(1), February 2009, pp.14-17.
Publisher:
Emerald

Comments on a paper from Tobias Buchner which outlined the situation of deinstitutionalisation and community living in Austria. The author looks at the similarities between the situation in Austria to that of Germany, and the difficulties of the transition process.

Journal article

Deinstitutionalisation and community living for people with intellectual disabilities in Austria: history, policies, implementation and research

Author:
BUCHNER Tobias
Journal article citation:
Tizard Learning Disability Review, 14(1), February 2009, pp.4-13.
Publisher:
Emerald

This article starts with a brief overview of the history of housing for people with intellectual disability in Austria. The system of care and Austrian disability policy are also examined, focusing on implementation of deinstitutionalisation and community living. The following analysis of services provided in the field of housing for people with intellectual disabilities shows that support is provided in undistinguished, generalised service packages based on a competency model. Academic research on community living is quite rare in Austria, and fails to take into account the subjective perspective of people with intellectual disabilities.

Book

Sheltered employment in five member states of the Council of Europe: Austria, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland

Authors:
SAMOY Erik, WATERPLAS Lina
Publisher:
Council of Europe
Publication year:
1997
Pagination:
67p.,bibliogs.
Place of publication:
Strasbourg

Comparative study looking at the situation of sheltered employment in the twelve Member States of the European Union. The data for each country is grouped under the following headings: institutional context; target population; access to sheltered employment; characteristics of the people in sheltered employment; and a discussion of the topics currently under debate around sheltered employment in each country.

Journal article Full text available online for free

Focus on Europe: further education needed for people with mental handicap

Author:
SLUCKIN Alice
Journal article citation:
Practice: Social Work in Action, 1(1), 1987, pp.63-70.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

Reports on some of the changes that have taken in four European countries and a comparison is made with some aspects of current British practice. It is now know that, given the right methods, even severely mentally handicapped people can be taught quite complex skills. Hence they should have access to further education, which has in the past been denied to them.

Journal article

Ageing and health status in adults with intellectual disabilities: results of the European Pomona II study

Authors:
HAVEMAN Meindert, et al
Journal article citation:
Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability, 36(1), March 2011, pp.49-60.
Publisher:
Informa Healthcare

POMONA II was a European Commission funded public health project collecting information from 14 countries using a set of key health indicators specifically relevant for people with intellectual disabilities. This research focused on age-specific differences relating to environmental and lifestyle factors and the 17 medical conditions measured by the POMONA Checklist of Health Indicators. The article describes how information was collected using the POMONA Health Interview Survey and Evaluation Form from a sample of 1,253 participants in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, and the United Kingdom. It then presents the results of the analysis, with tables showing characteristics of people with intellectual disabilities in the study, frequency of social contacts with relatives or friends according to age, lifestyle risk factors in people with intellectual disabilities according to age, and general and age-specific prevalence rates of health problems. The authors discuss how healthy older adults with intellectual disabilities are with regard to lifestyle factors, and whether there are health disparities between older adults with and without intellectual disabilities. They note that some evidence of health disparities was found for older people with intellectual disabilities, particularly in terms of under diagnosed or inadequately managed preventable health conditions.

Journal article

Workplace stress, burnout and coping: a qualitative study of the experiences of Australian disability support workers

Authors:
JUDD Megan J., et al
Journal article citation:
Health and Social Care in the Community, 25(3), 2017, pp.1109-1117.
Publisher:
Wiley-Blackwell

The aim of this study was to explore disability support workers' (DSWs) perceptions of enjoyable and challenging aspects of disability support work, sources of stress and burnout and the strategies they use to cope when these issues arise. Twelve DSWs workers providing support for adults living with intellectual and physical disabilities were interviewed. Thematic analysis revealed a superordinate theme of ‘Balance’ comprising three sub-themes: 'Balancing Negatives and Positives', 'Periods of Imbalance', and 'Strategies to Reclaim Balance'. Participants spoke of the rewarding and uplifting times in their job such as watching a client learn new skills and being shown appreciation. These moments were contrasted by emotionally and physically draining aspects of their work, including challenging client behaviour, earning a low income, and having limited power to make decisions. Participants described periods of imbalance, wherein the negatives of their job outweighed the positives, resulting in stress and sometimes burnout. Participants often had to actively seek support and tended to rely on their own strategies to manage stress. Findings suggest that organisational support together with workplace interventions that support DSWs to perceive the positive aspects of their work, such as acceptance and mindfulness-based approaches, may help to limit experiences of stress and burnout. The further development and evaluation of emotion-focused workplace therapies, and interventions that consider organisational (macro) factors is suggested. (Edited publisher abstract)

Journal article

Assessing psychosocial work-related stress across five European countries: implications for workforce development

Authors:
DENNY Margaret, WELLS John, CUNNINGHAM Jennifer
Journal article citation:
Journal of Mental Health Training Education and Practice, 6(2), 2011, pp.93-103.
Publisher:
Emerald

The European Union's social and employment policy emphasises that member states should develop workforce development policies that combat work-related stress. However there is little comparative information on the nature of psychosocial job strain and the experiences of staff working in the vocational rehabilitative sector in mental health and intellectual disabilities. This paper reports the findings of a small-scale study, using a cross-sectional job content questionnaire (JCQ) and focus groups, to explore psychosocial job stress among managers and support workers in five European countries. Findings from the JCQ showed that just under 20 percent of the sample exhibited symptoms of job stress. The focus groups identified the key stressors as: balancing work demands with time available to carry out tasks; poor communication within organisations; and feeling unsupported in one's work. As a result of this work, which is part of the Reducing Occupational Stress Employment Project (ROSE), it was found that there are no national or European data collected upon which to base effective interventions to combat occupational stress and no effective mechanisms in the workplace to deal with occupational stress for professionals working in this sector. Based on the findings, a web site was developed that provides information to managers, trainers, and support workers to manage personal and organisational stressors and raise awareness of the issue.

Book Full text available online for free

Access to specialised victim support services for women with disabilities who have experienced violence. Comparative Research Report: Austria, Germany, Iceland and United Kingdom

Authors:
WOODIN Sarah, SHAH Sonali
Publisher:
University of Leeds. Centre for Disability Studies
Publication year:
2014
Pagination:
59
Place of publication:
Leeds

This comparative report presents the results of research into violence against women with disabilities for the project 'Access to specialised victim support services for women with disabilities who have experienced violence', which was funded by the EU Daphne III programme. It is based on research which took place in Austria, Germany, Iceland and United Kingdom between 2013 and 2014 and involved 187 women with disabilities (106 women in focus groups and 81 women in individual interviews). The research included women with mobility and sensory impairments, women with intellectual impairments, women with mental health conditions and women with multiple impairments. Specialised service providers assisting women who have experienced violence also took part in this study (602 responses to an online survey and 54 individual interviews with representatives from services). Research findings are discussed in the following areas: perceptions and understanding of violence; experiences of violence and support over the life course; women's knowledge about their rights; knowledge about use of services; experience of barriers; helpful aspects of support. Suggestions for improvement and good practice are also included. The report highlights the need for support services that recognise the type and extent of violence against disabled women need to be developed, and for both mainstream and specialised strategies to be pursued. (Edited publisher abstract)

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