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A qualitative exploration of the life experiences of adults diagnosed with mild learning disabilities from minority ethnic communities

Dr Claudio Pestana (Chartered Psychologist currently working for Barnet Mental Health Trust, London. He is also an Associate Lecturer in the Centre for Psychiatry, Queen Mary University, London, UK)

Tizard Learning Disability Review

ISSN: 1359-5474

Article publication date: 14 October 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The present qualitative study aims to address the gap in what one knows about the life experiences of adults diagnosed with mild learning disabilities from minority ethnic communities and to generate a deeper understanding of their experiences.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper individually interviewed four adults with mild learning disabilities receiving support from an independent living project using semi‐structured interviews. The interviews were recorded and transcribed verbatim. The data collected were qualitatively analysed using interpretative phenomenological analysis.

Findings

The findings showed that participants felt socially isolated and did not have a wide social network. Participants also reported that they had suffered some form of abuse in the past. Participants also said that they found employment satisfying and finally that they did not receive support with their cultural needs.

Originality/value

This paper highlights that greater emphasis should be placed on examining the social support needs of individuals with mild learning disabilities in order for them to live independently without risking social isolation.

Keywords

Citation

Pestana, C. (2011), "A qualitative exploration of the life experiences of adults diagnosed with mild learning disabilities from minority ethnic communities", Tizard Learning Disability Review, Vol. 16 No. 5, pp. 6-13. https://doi.org/10.1108/13595471111185701

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited