Abstract

Descriptive information on the views of business people towards the presence of persons with intellectual disabilities as customers was reported. We interviewed 89 individuals representing a range of shops and local amenities in four urban and four country regions in Queensland, Australia. We also systematically examined the influence of degree of intellectual disabilities by interviewing employees in shops near community residential facilities for persons with mild/moderate and those near facilities for persons with severe/profound intellectual disabilities. A third group of businesses not located near any such residential facilities served as a control group. Overall, results suggest that business people had few special concerns related to interactions with customers who have intellectual disabilities.

This paper is based in part on a dissertation submitted by the first author to the Graduate School of Education, The University of Queensland, in partial fulfillment for the doctoral degree. The authors thank Steven J. Taylor and the three anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments on an earlier version of this manuscript.

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