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Article
Publication date: 18 June 2018

John-Stewart Gordon and Felice Tavera-Salyutov

The purpose of this paper is to examine and comment on disability rights legislation by focusing on international documents on people with impairments of the last decades, in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine and comment on disability rights legislation by focusing on international documents on people with impairments of the last decades, in order to provide more information on the dynamics of the disability rights movement and their moral plea for full inclusion.

Design/methodology/approach

By analyzing the international legislation and most important guidelines with respect to people with impairments, it is possible to portray a socio-political change by unfolding the agenda of the historical dimension of the decisive events.

Findings

The long and difficult struggle of people with impairments to beneficiaries of full human rights protection is a fundamental socio-political change that is documented by adhering to important international legislation and guidelines.

Originality/value

The examination of recent international legislation with respect to people with impairments provides historical context for current developments in the context of disability and full inclusion by conceding human rights as their moral and legal foundation.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 37 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 June 2018

Thomas Köllen, Marja-Liisa Kakkuri-Knuuttila and Regine Bendl

There seems to exist a widespread, unquestioned and unquestionable consent, both in research and practice, that there is a moral value inherent in equality and related initiatives…

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Abstract

Purpose

There seems to exist a widespread, unquestioned and unquestionable consent, both in research and practice, that there is a moral value inherent in equality and related initiatives toward diversity and inclusion. However, this consent is primarily based on political convictions and emotional reasons, and is without any strong ethical grounding. Whilst a considerable volume of research has been carried out into different facets of the economic value of initiatives toward equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), comparatively little research has been undertaken into its moral value. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to structure the moral perspectives on EDI more precisely and more critically.

Design/methodology/approach

After discussing the interrelation of the three concepts equality, diversity and inclusion, the authors discuss the way in which initiatives toward diversity and inclusion are justified morally in literature. The authors point out the crucial position of equality, and then, subsequently, outline how different approaches to equality try to achieve moral legitimacy. Being an important group of initiatives in this debate, the authors subsequently reflect upon the moral (il)legitimacy of affirmative action (AA). The concluding section of this paper provides a brief summary of the findings.

Findings

The moral evaluation of equality, diversity and inclusion remains an under-theorized field. Within the discourse on equality, diversity and inclusion, the term “justice” is largely used in an intuitive way, rather than being rooted in a specific moral philosophy. As there are several conceivable, differing moral perspectives on EDI, one cannot expect an indisputable answer to the question as to whether a given approach toward equality, diversity and inclusion is morally praiseworthy or just. However, the widespread assumption that equality is morally praiseworthy per se, and that striving for equality morally justifies any initiative toward diversity and inclusion, is untenable.

Originality/value

This paper addresses the lack of theorizing on the moral value of initiatives toward equality, diversity, and inclusion, such as diversity management, AA or various equal opportunity approaches. Future research could enrich the discourse on the moral evaluation of diversity management, inclusion programs and organizational equality approaches with new philosophical facets and perspectives, perspectives that might differ from those taken in the predominantly American discourse.

Details

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, vol. 37 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-7149

Keywords

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