Title

Justice and rights examined: From ideas to action

Start Time

5-10-2012 12:25 PM

End Time

5-10-2012 1:55 PM

Session Type

Event

Abstract

In aiming to develop a more critical and socially responsive occupational science, this panel explores justice and human rights from theoretical and empirical perspectives. The first paper presents a systematic mapping of notions of justice in occupational science and occupational therapy literature. As a deeply rooted concept in occupational therapy, justice is tied to its core values and philosophy. Since the advent of occupational science, justice inquiry has assumed conceptual, theoretical, political and critical tenor. A historical overview that highlights the evolving notions of justice will be presented. The second paper examines concepts of justice in the occupational justice literature. Disparate conceptions of justice related to distributive justice are frequently used without definition, or recognition of competing conceptualizations. This paper argues that recognition justice (Fraser, 2001) which promotes parity of participation might better serve the aims of occupational justice.

Moving from theory to action, the third paper argues that occupational science is well-positioned to critically examine emerging human rights discourses in occupational therapy. Using Occupational Therapy without Borders (OTwB) publications as data, the paper asks: What is the cultural logic of this movement, and how it is understood in a global context? This analysis draws from global human rights literature to understand potential contributions of OTwB to global human rights work.The fourth paper presents research related to migration and human rights, highlighting how migrants, whose labor is essential to the world economy, often have limited rights. Three studies (asylum seekers who sustained disability due to torture; Namibian migrants to Western South America; migrant workers in the Midwest meat-packing industry) highlight how documentation of occupational pattern shifts, which could effectively influence policy, is missing from global human rights discourse. The final paper addresses policy and justice in Australia, where recent ‘social inclusion’ policy emphasizes economic participation of people living with disability.Employment is seen as the means to transform passive citizens at risk of dependence on the state into ‘active citizens’(Walters, 1997). This paper presents a discourse analysis into social inclusion policy and the taken-for-grantedness of ‘participation’, focusing on scholarship on macro issues and implications for occupational justice practices and policy.

This panel critically examines justice and ways occupational science can add value to discourse on participation and human rights.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why is it important to consider occupational justice issues from a critical perspective?
  2. How can such research into occupational justice promote participation as human rights?
  3. What are the benefits of exploring a macro approach to occupation?

References

De Guchteneire, Pécoud, A. &Cholewinski, R. (2009).Migration and human rights: The United Nations Convention on Migrant Workers’ Rights. New York: Oxford University Press / UNESCO Publishing.

Fraser, N. (2001). Recognition without ethics. Theory Culture Society. 18(21) 21-42. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/02632760122051760

Goodale, M. (2007). Locating rights, envisioning law between the global and the local. In M. Goodale& S. E. Merry (Eds.), The practice of human rights: Tracking law between the global and the local (pp. 1-38). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511819193

Walters, W. (1997). The ‘Active Society’: new designs for social policy. Policy & Politics, 25(3), 221-234. http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/030557397782453264

Whiteford, G. E., & Hocking, C. (2012). Occupational science: Society, inclusion, participation.Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/9781118281581

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Oct 5th, 12:25 PM Oct 5th, 1:55 PM

Justice and rights examined: From ideas to action

In aiming to develop a more critical and socially responsive occupational science, this panel explores justice and human rights from theoretical and empirical perspectives. The first paper presents a systematic mapping of notions of justice in occupational science and occupational therapy literature. As a deeply rooted concept in occupational therapy, justice is tied to its core values and philosophy. Since the advent of occupational science, justice inquiry has assumed conceptual, theoretical, political and critical tenor. A historical overview that highlights the evolving notions of justice will be presented. The second paper examines concepts of justice in the occupational justice literature. Disparate conceptions of justice related to distributive justice are frequently used without definition, or recognition of competing conceptualizations. This paper argues that recognition justice (Fraser, 2001) which promotes parity of participation might better serve the aims of occupational justice.

Moving from theory to action, the third paper argues that occupational science is well-positioned to critically examine emerging human rights discourses in occupational therapy. Using Occupational Therapy without Borders (OTwB) publications as data, the paper asks: What is the cultural logic of this movement, and how it is understood in a global context? This analysis draws from global human rights literature to understand potential contributions of OTwB to global human rights work.The fourth paper presents research related to migration and human rights, highlighting how migrants, whose labor is essential to the world economy, often have limited rights. Three studies (asylum seekers who sustained disability due to torture; Namibian migrants to Western South America; migrant workers in the Midwest meat-packing industry) highlight how documentation of occupational pattern shifts, which could effectively influence policy, is missing from global human rights discourse. The final paper addresses policy and justice in Australia, where recent ‘social inclusion’ policy emphasizes economic participation of people living with disability.Employment is seen as the means to transform passive citizens at risk of dependence on the state into ‘active citizens’(Walters, 1997). This paper presents a discourse analysis into social inclusion policy and the taken-for-grantedness of ‘participation’, focusing on scholarship on macro issues and implications for occupational justice practices and policy.

This panel critically examines justice and ways occupational science can add value to discourse on participation and human rights.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why is it important to consider occupational justice issues from a critical perspective?
  2. How can such research into occupational justice promote participation as human rights?
  3. What are the benefits of exploring a macro approach to occupation?