Disability – Beyond

Amber Green; December 7, 2017

International Day of Persons with Disabilities


Disability Day


A United Nations initiative, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities is observed around the world every December 3rd[i]. Though December 3rd, 2017 has passed, I felt compelled to write this article to bring awareness to the fact that ongoing observance is necessary for such an overarching and important topic. Do you disagree? Consider this:


‘Disability’ is a term that has legal, societal, economic, political and psychological implications to both individuals (including their family and friends), and institutions in our society (affecting everything from housing and education to healthcare). According to the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC),

Defining disability is a complex, evolving matter. The term “disability” covers a broad range and degree of conditions. A disability may have been present at birth, caused by an accident, or developed over time…

“Disability” should be interpreted in broad terms. It includes both present and past conditions, as well as a subjective component…[i]

3D Disabilty Picture

I urge everyone reading this article to consider the ramifications of living with a disability where you live (perhaps you don’t have to imagine, as you may be impacted by disability, yourself). Article 8.1 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities urges States Parties, in part:

(a) To raise awareness throughout society, including at the family level, regarding persons with disabilities, and to foster respect for the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities;

(b) To combat stereotypes, prejudices and harmful practices relating to persons with disabilities, including those based on sex and age, in all areas of life;[i]

Using these two small (but meaningful) excerpts from the Convention, I would like to examine how Canadians are effected by disability.

Disabled and Sunset

Article 8.1(a): ‘Raise Awareness Throughout Society…’

In the final few weeks of 2017, the year in which Canada celebrates 150 years since Confederation, I wish to bring your attention to some statistics close to home (as Meditech International Inc. is a Canadian company, based in Toronto, ON).

In 2012, one in seven Canadians (3.8 million people) aged 15 years or older reported having a disability that limited their daily activities. According to Statistics Canada, “prevalence of disability rose from 4% among 15- to 24-year olds to 43% for persons aged 75 years and older.”[i]

Such a strong correlation between aging and increased risk of disability may not be surprising to many, but the implications are extraordinary, especially as Canadian seniors outnumber children for the first time in Canada’s history (according to the 2016 consensus).[ii]

Statistics Canada reported that “disabilities related to pain, flexibility and mobility were most common. About 12% of Canadians aged 15 years or older (just over 3 million [at the time]) reported having at least one of these disabilities… 66% of those who reported mobility disabilities also reported the other two, and 35% of Canadians with disabilities reported having all three.”[iii] If you or someone you love experiences pain caused by disability, please note that laser therapy for pain is regarded as highly effective.

Disability Charts

Article 8.1(b): Combat stereotypes…

Addressing the hardships faced by people with disabilities requires ongoing effort and understanding. Though Section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms states that every person is to be considered equal (regardless of race, religion, national or ethnic origin, colour, sex, age or physical or mental disability), ‘ableism’ still exists.

[Ableism] may be defined as a belief system, analogous to racism, sexism or ageism, [sic] that sees persons with disabilities as being less worthy of respect and consideration, less able to contribute and participate, or of less inherent value than others. Ableism may be conscious or unconscious, and may be embedded in institutions, systems or the broader culture of a society. It can limit the opportunities of persons with disabilities and reduce their inclusion in the life of their communities.[i]

Disability Stereotypes

I hope that this article inspires you to continue to “promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities… [to] increase awareness of gains to be derived from the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life.”[ii]

BioFlex Laser Therapy is a form of Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT; also referred to as ‘Cold Laser Therapy’ or ‘Photobiomodulation’). It relieves pain and reduces inflammation by promoting healing at the cellular level. Please contact us for more information and a list of indications for use in your region.

neck pain


**Please contact us for a complete list of the approved indications for use applicable in your region.


[1] United Nations, Division for Social Policy and Development- Disability. “International Day of Persons with Disabilities – 3 December.” Date accessed: December 6, 2017.

[1] Ontario Human Rights Commission. “Policy on ableism and discrimination based on disability- What is disability?” Ontario Human Rights Commission. Accessed December 6, 2017.

[1] UN General Assembly, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 13 December 2006, A/RES/61/106, Annex I, available

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