Policies to improve accessibility for disabled people ‘not implemented properly’ in Malaysia

Asia-Pacific, August 15 2011

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: The federal government has all the laws and policies in place to increase the accessibility to public facilities for disabled people but these are not being implemented properly.

“We are not happy with this, but are pushing very hard for these amenities to be provided for the community. We are engaging the relevant ministries towards this,” said Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil today.

Speaking to the media after closing an annual dialogue session with NGOs representing  disabled community, she said the ministry will present the grouses and requests made by the community at the dialogue to the federal government.

Among these are the lack of accessibility and amenities at public facilities, dearth of job opportunities and lack of funds for education and healthcare services.

Shahrizat said there are requests for the government to bear the cost of further education at a tertiary level, and for medicine at hospitals.

She also said disabled community do not like to be termed as “people with special abilities” (orang kelainan upaya). “They have agreed unanimously that they would like to be referred to as disabled people,” she added.

Shahrizat also said that the government will consider mandatory registration of disabled people with the ministry.

This requirement would not only ease the documentation of disabled citizens but also aid in the implementation of policies and programmes aimed at the community, said Shahrizat on the requested for this made at the dialogue.

Currently, registration with the ministry is voluntary. Those who do so will receive a registration card that entitles them to certain benefits.

Source: http://www.thesundaily.my

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