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Nebraska’s Children with Disabilities: Part One

The 25th annual Kids Count in Nebraska Report includes an in-depth look at Nebraska’s children with disabilities.

What is a Disability?

Disability is an umbrella term reflecting the interaction between a person’s body and the society in which they live. People with disabilities experience one or more of the following three dimensions:

  1. Impairment in body structure or function, or mental functioning, e.g. loss of a limb, loss of vision, or memory loss.
  2. Activity limitation due to difficulty seeing, hearing, walking, speaking, using the hands, or solving problems.
  3. Participation restrictions in normal daily activities — doing school work, engaging in social and recreational activities, and obtaining health care and preventive services.

Children with disabilities and their families experience barriers to their basic human rights and inclusion in our society. Their abilities are frequently overlooked and underestimated, while simultaneously their needs are given low priority. The barriers these children and their families face are more frequently the result of their environment and public policies rather than their impairment. These barriers include physical obstacles and societal attitudes, and they must be prevented, reduced, or eliminated. Meaningful inclusion supports children with disabilities in reaching their full potential, resulting in broad societal benefits.

Who is Impacted?

But, those 17,254 children aren’t everyone. 14.7% of children in Nebraska are classified as special education and 16.7% of Nebraska’s children have a special health need. With these children, we found that issues of poverty, health care, education, and juvenile justice were intricately linked.

Over the next five weeks, we will be breaking down their needs and our suggestions to meet those needs.

Nebraska’s children with disabilities need our help and support! Click here for access to all of the data and findings on Nebraska’s children with disabilities. Click here to request a copy of the 2017 Kids Count in Nebraska Report, or call our office at (402) 597-3100 to schedule a time to pick up a copy in person!


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