The Arc Responds to the National Disability Rights Network’s Newest Report

Washington, DC – The Arc of the United States applauds the National Disability Rights Network for its report “Devaluing People with Disabilities: Medical Procedures that Violate Civil Rights.” The report reviews the facts of Ashley X, who five years ago made national news when her parents decided to medically stunt her physical growth and maturation. The report presents a compilation of similar experiences and “treatment” of individuals with disabilities that discriminates against them based on their disability and undermines the integrity of their unique individuality.

“We are saddened and angered by the evidence NDRN presents about people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities who continue to experience disability–related discrimination in decisions to provide, delay, deny, or limit health care interventions or treatments. Protections must be in place to assure that an individual’s health, well-being, and expressed wishes, if known, are the only justifiable bases for making medical decisions,” said Peter V. Berns, CEO of The Arc.

The Arc has a history of speaking out against such medical atrocities and advocating for changes to ensure the rights of individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities are protected. For years, The Arc has held the belief that growth attenuation treatment to modify a child’s typical development should be prohibited.

The Arc looks forward to working with NDRN and other organizations to create additional safeguards to protect the civil rights of people with disabilities.