Pro­mot­ing ac­ces­si­bil­ity along with de­vel­op­ment of skill sets holds key to em­pow­er­ing peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties, a top United Na­tions (UN) of­fi­cial said at the AS­SOCHAM event held in New Delhi.

"We need to re­al­ize that we can­not have mean­ing­ful em­ploy­ment un­less we have ed­u­ca­tion and skill sets, which will not hap­pen un­less there is ac­ces­si­bil­ity which is the driver of em­pow­er­ment," said Ms Dorodi Sharma, UN Dis­abil­ity Spe­cial­ist (In­dia) while ad­dress­ing the AS­SOCHAM con­fer­ence on 'Em­pow­er­ing per­sons with dis­abil­i­ties through ac­ces­si­ble & as­sis­tive tech­nol­ogy'.

Cit­ing govern­ment data, Ms Sharma in­formed that 73.8per cent of peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties in In­dia in the em­ploy­able age of 1559years, do not have em­ploy­ment while only 56 per cent of peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties are lit­er­ate.

"Un­less we have ac­ces­si­bil­ity as a hu­man right, per­sons with dis­abil­i­ties will not be able to ac­quire ed­u­ca­tion and will not be able to have em­ploy­ment," added Ms Sharma.

She also said that in­clu­sion must be­come part of the value sys­tem like the way gen­der be­came part of the value sys­tem to push the agenda. "On the lines of gen­der in­clu­sion we also need to look at whether I our pro­cesses are in­clu­sive for peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties."

She fur­ther said that pri­vate sec­tor em­ploy­ers must go through the Rights of Per­sons with Dis­abil­i­ties Act, 2016 to be able to ef­fec­tively play their part in im­ple­men­ta­tion of this law.

Ms Sharma also said that in In­dia we still some­how are in­tu­itively not look­ing at dis­abil­ity as part of hu­man di­ver­sity. "When we look at dis­abled peo­ple we need to un­der­stand that it is a whole spectrum, we need to un­der­stand the di­ver­sity within the dis­abil­ity com­mu­nity as well."

Or. K. D. Gupta, Se­nior Mem­ber, Man­ag­ing Com­mit­tee, AS­SOCHAM wel­com­ing Mr. D. R. Sarin Chair­man and Man­ag­ing Direc­tor, Ar­ti­fi­cial Limbs Man­u­fac­tur­ing Cor­po­ra­tion of In­dia (ALlMCO). Ms Dorodi Sharma, UN Dis­abil­ity Spe­cial­ist (In­dia), United Na­tions...

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