The results of the study by the Ministry of Community Development revealed that the reality conditions and circumstances of the women of determination automatically improve as they elevate their education. The study also highlighted the reality of women of determination in the labor market, social aspects, therapeutic and rehabilitation reality and education that occupied the best category for women and girls of determination.
The goal of the study “Reality of Emirati Women and Girls People of Determination” prepared by the Ministry aimed at identifying the current reality conditions and circumstances of emirati women and girls in the United Arab Emirates and its relation to a group of variables in terms of: type of disability, severity of disability, educational level, age, marital status from the point of view of girls and women of determination and their parents or guardians. The study included (51) girls and women of determination with different disabilities and (185) parents/guardians.
Speaking about the reality of women of determination, the study revealed that the parent/guardian’s view of the reality of his daughter of determination is better than the daughter’s view of her reality. Women with visual impairment reality is the best compared to the rest of disabilities. The women of determination circumstances improve automatically as they improve and elevate their education.
The study also recommended the necessity to improve the level of provided services for girls and women of determination with intellectual disabilities and hearing impairment in accordance with their needs and abilities; develop and improve educational, rehabilitation and social programs that commensurate with the capacities of those with minor and medium disabilities.
The purpose is to fully integrate them into the community and meet their needs and expectations of their parents/guardians that go beyond treatment, care and rehabilitation.
The study also recommended the importance of supporting provided programs and services to the people of determination in rehabilitation centers, and facilitating access for the girls and women of determination to achieve their highest levels of education, including university depending on their abilities, while at the same time, providing the most adequate and reasonable facilities facilities to ensure their academic success as well as professional and operational and integration community programs for the girls of determination after their post graduate stages; this helps them achieve economic independence, community engagement and self-realization.
The study stressed that the importance of providing counselling, psychological and social programs for women of determination who have experienced negative social experiences, such as divorcees and widows, help them build themselves and integrate into public life with confidence. The recommendations also included awareness and counselling programs for girls with determination ensuring their awareness of their future in terms of marriage opportunities, family building, raising children and social relations.
The study also highlighted the importance of building and supporting positive societal attitudes towards girls and women of determination as important members of the community who are able to participate and take responsibility in educational, rehabilitation and sports, culture and work fields.
Going back to the results of the study, the education reality of women and people of determination appeared to be in a good level, due to the availability of good educational services in the UAE rehabilitation centers taking into account their cognitive needs, as well as the integration achievements of people with motor, visual and hearing disabilities in public schools and successful experiences for these disabilities in the inclusion process.
In relation to the working environment field, the study emphasized the need to provide employment opportunities for girls and women of determination with different disabilities according to their abilities and potential taking into consideration adequate and appropriate spatial environmental facilities and an understanding working environment to ensure equal opportunities with their non-disabled peers.
The results of the study showed that girls and women of determination with intellectual and hearing disabilities face the most challenges in various fields, where social communication skills possessed by people for determination with intellectual disabilities may be below the social required level, in addition to that sign language communication skills for the deaf people is not fully recognized by the majority of the members of the community and opportunities for people of determination with intellectual disabilities is the less fortunate in integrated education and vocational rehabilitation programs and employment, as well as marriage and independent family life.
The situation is not very different for people of determination with hearing disabilities in terms of the lack of educational programs that help girls with hearing disabilities finish their high school studies “thanawaya aama” according to their abilities and poor unavailability of language therapy programs associated with the inclusion process in schools, lack of knowledge of the teachers at public education of sign language; all these factors reflect the vocational rehabilitation programs for the girls of determination with hearing disabilities and therefore employment opportunities for them is only limited to data entry, and archiving work which impedes the professional development for the girls with hearing disabilities due to their low school and educational attainment.
The study concluded that the reality of women and girls of determination in the UAE community is improving and rising to a better level as long as these people of determination achieve progress in their educational level. Educational opportunities for girls of determination with intellectual disabilities who are educated in special education centers remain limited opportunities whether in social life or rehabilitation and employment.
However, these opportunities are open for girls of determination as they improve their educational level and increase their communication with their surroundings and opportunities for marriage, family and children.
Rehabilitation and Employment
The study “Reality of Women and Girls of Determination in the UAE” called for the importance of improving vocational rehabilitation programs according to the requirements of the labor market taking into consideration jobs and occupations that are accepted by the community, increasing the awareness of families and community members of the importance of vocational rehabilitation programs for girls with different disabilities. It also stressed the necessity of taking measures to facilitate the access of women of determination into the labor market, compete with non-disabled peers, provide adequate environmental facilities to ensure equal opportunities, and support their adaptation and career development.