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Chapter 7

Chapter 7. Interventions to Reduce Prejudice

Over the past 30 years, there have been numerous approaches to reducing prejudice toward disabled people. Some have had minimal effects while others have worsened stigma and discrimination. Chapter 7 provides a comprehensive review of interventions designed to improve understanding or reduce negative disability attitudes and other misinformed reactions. Much anti-prejudice research has focused on interventions to increase contact with minority groups under the assumption that friendly interactions will produce more equitable outcomes. Chapter 7 describes the considerable evidence from longitudinal, experimental, and field studies showing when intergroup contact is most effective, and how interactions depend on institutionally supported, cooperative, and equal status exchanges (Pettigrew and Tropp 2008). Longitudinal studies have found that nondisabled children who participate in cooperative exchange programs with disabled peers form more complex impressions about disability, and rate peers as more attractive than those who were not part of the inclusion program (Maras and Brown 1996). Nevertheless, increased access to higher education, employment, and public spaces may be more important than friendship when it comes to creating the optimal conditions for contact between groups on an equal status basis (Chapter 8). … see more

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