The Task Force based the Guidelines on core values in the (APA, 2002; Smart, 2001; Szymanski & Trueba, 1994) with specific reference to Principle D: Justice and Principle E (Respect for People’s Rights and Dignity).
The core values include respect for human dignity, recognition that individuals with disabilities have the right to self determination, participation in society, equitable access to the benefits of psychological services, recognition that people with disabilities are diverse and have unique individual characteristics, and recognition that disability is not solely a biological characteristic, but is also a result of the individual’s interaction with the environment.
Much of the identified literature was theoretical and professional, focusing on specific disabling conditions rather than generic disability.
The Task Force used the results of those reviews in developing these guidelines.
Additionally, the will increase discussion, training and awareness about disability across the profession.
Psychologists should also become aware of how their own attitudes, reactions, conceptions of disability, and possible biases may affect their professional relationships with clients who have disabilities.
Further, it is important for psychologists to learn the best “barrier-free” psychological practices for clients with disabilities, including provision of reasonable accommodations, and appropriate integration of disability-related issues into assessment and intervention.
Greg made an indelible impression with not only his professionalism and determination, but his grace, his courage, and his puckish sense of humor.
The Task Force dedicates this report to his memory. At its February 2006 meeting, the APA’s Council of Representatives approved the Task Force and allocated ,500 from 2006 discretionary funds.
The task force also wishes to thank Anju Khubchandani, Director of APA’s Office on Disability Issues in Psychology, who assisted and provided counsel to the Task Force throughout this project, and to her administrative coordinators, Sara Laney and Mara Lunaria. Taliaferro wishes to thank the Research Fund of the Cincinnati Psychoanalytic Institute for its support.