I am a feminist and a disability rights activist. I've been passionate about social justice issues all of my life and enjoy the opportunity to learn from and share with a wider community of feminists.

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Access to Parenthood: Canadian Couple May Lose Their Son Because They are Disabled

I am commenting on this story. As a disabled woman I have been interested in the intersections of sexuality and disability for a long time. There are so many barriers beyond the physical when disabled people want to express themselves sexually. One of the biggest barriers is that it is still widely believed that disabled people are inherently asexual. This misconception not only leads to difficulties in being accepted as sexual beings but also places disabled people at a significantly higher risk of sexual violence (if a person is perceived as nonsexual their is an assumption that they are immune to sexual advances).

So what happens when a disabled couple expresses their sexuality and that sexuality produces a child? In the case of Ontario coupe Maricyl Palisoc and Charles Wilton (who both have Cerebral Palsy), They were told even before the birth of their son that he would be removed if they could not find 24 hour able-bodied care for their son.

This brings up a couple of questions. Why were these two people designated as unfit parents before they were even parents? and what constitutes able-bodied? As regards the former both parents have Cerebral Palsy which limits motor function and speech. Neither parent has any cognitive delays. Charles the father’s capabilities have not been discussed but Maricyl has been described as capable of breast feeding, bathing and diaper changing on her own. A family friend and activist who is paying out of pocket ...

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