Symposium summary: Participation of children with Down syndrome in research: Sharing their views through innovative methods
In the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (Office of the United High Commissioner for Human Rights, 1989), Article 12 states that the child has a right to express an opinion and Article 13 states that the child has the right to express his/her views. There is a pressing need to include children with Down syndrome as participants in research and practice in order to understand their micro and mesosytems. Because their voices have been excluded we need to explore ways to make their participation a reality. Therefore participatory research which includes the voice of children with disabilities is extremely important and research which promotes how their inclusion can be facilitated is vital. This symposium will share four examples of how children with Down syndrome, ranging in age from two years to thirteen years, participated in research to share their views. This symposium aims to contribute to the research field where children with disabilities are generally excluded. This symposium celebrates the United Nations 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by demonstrating how children shared their views in research. The presentations will also identify the lessons learned to support further research, policy and practice.