Asia-Pacific Aug 20, 2012
Approximately 11,000 persons with disabilities in Fiji face discrimination or some sort of human violation everyday of their lives.
And this says disability activist Sainimili Tawake must stop.
Ms Tawake, who has vision disability, did not let that stop her from articulating to the Constitution Commission challenges faced by persons with disabilities.
In her submission to the Constitution Commission yesterday, Ms Tawake said the discrimination against persons with disabilities ranged from the area of negative attitudes of society, lack of reasonable accommodation and lack of equal opportunities.
“The lack of participation of persons with disabilities is really overwhelming because of the vast discrimination they face and also the intersectional discrimination against them,” Ms Tawake said.
Ms Tawake said she wanted to see the vulnerability of women and girls with disabilities addressed in the new constitution.
“They are vulnerable in their own homes, particularly in areas where they are constantly abused by their own families, caregivers and people around them.
“And there are no support mechanisms in place to adhere to in terms of safety and protection for women and girls with disabilities,” she said.
Ms Tawake also spoke to the commission about the transport challenges faced by persons with disabilities.
“The lack of provision whether by land, air or sea to allow persons with disabilities to move independently limits their effective participation and inclusion.”
Source: The Fiji Times