The life circumstances of the mentally disabled: A survey of Sjuhärad.
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2009
This article describes the life circumstances of persons with a psychiatric disability living in one urban and six rural areas in a single region in Sweden. Furthermore, the life circumstances of persons with a psychiatric disability are discussed in relation to the aims of social policies in Sweden. Data were collected by means of a survey study exploring the formal support provided by local authorities to its citizens and the informal support given by family members and volunteers. The results reveal how the respondents themselves describe their life circumstances in terms of their living conditions, occupation and activities, health, and formal and informal support. The results indicate that persons with a psychiatric disability, regardless of where they live, need both formal and informal support in order to cope with their everyday lives. The family plays an important role in this, and it is essential for the formal and informal support systems to cooperate with each other. The lack of activities and opportunities for work experienced by persons with a psychiatric disability indicates that the sociopolitical goal of fostering access to employment and work and to earning a living for this group is far from having been attained.