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Triple vision: Putting the “You” Back in Eugenics: Part 2

"In this second episode of a three-part series on eugenics, the Triple Vision team talks to Brian Moore, Dr. Mahadeo Sukhai and Marc Workman. Brian shares his experience with discrimination during a pre-natal class involving the birth of his son. Dr. Mahadeo Sukhai explains the origins of eugenics, as well as the difference between the science of genetics and the practice of eugenics. And Marc Workman, current Chief Executive Officer of the World Blind Union, expands on the past practice of eugenics in Canada, particularly in Alberta. He proposes the alternative that if the environment a child with disabilities is born into was more inclusive, it may be easier for parents to make difficult decisions during a pregnancy about whether or not to bring their child, determined to have a disability, to term.

“One thing that I think we can do, that I think we could do a lot better at, is helping present the whole picture when someone is faced with making what is, let’s face it, a tremendously difficult choice. What scholars like Adrienne Asch would say is that, at the very minimum, we need to make sure that when parents are being presented with the information on the risks around the disability, that they’re also being given accurate information on what its like to actually have that disability. The thing is the genetic counselors who are providing this information may not have a ton of experience with disability. They’re probably not in the community. They may not have close friends or close family members, or they themselves probably don’t have disabilities. So, you have to wonder, how accurate is the picture that is being painted for parents when the individuals who are giving that information may themselves have their own biases, their own misunderstandings about what it is truly like to live with disability.”    "

Listen here or on your favourite podcatcher!

Archival Date: 
Wednesday, March 23, 2022