INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITES (IDPD)
In this twenty first century, there are over 1 billion people living in the world that have disclosed they have some form of disability. Disclosed! Just because there are thousands that will not come out or be brought out of hiding for fear of persecution from their fellow human beings. PWD not only face attitudinal barriers but also physical, social and economic barriers that keep them in a suffocating poverty not just in developing countries but developed ones as well. Even as PWD are the world’s largest minority group, the issue of disability disparity continues to remain invisible in most local, regional, national and international mainstream development frameworks and all processes. The United Nations have shined a spotlight on PWD since declaring The International Year of Disabled Persons in 1981 and followed that by a full decade of Disabled Persons spotlight from 1983 to 1992. But it takes more than putting light on a subject to get people to pay attention to the inequities’ PWD face, take action and make fair change. It has to become personal.
Today, the world population is over 7 billion people and more than one billion people, or approximately 15 per cent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability; 80 per cent live in developing countries. The annual observance of the International Day of Disabled Persons was proclaimed in 1992 by United Nations General Assembly resolution 47/3. It aims to promote the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities in all spheres of society and development, and to increase awareness of the situation of persons with disabilities in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life.
Since 1992, December 3 marks the annual observance of the International Day of Persons with Disability. The last 18 months or so have been nothing short of disastrous for humanity. The pandemic situation was even more challenging for the disabled community since it was left with no means to help itself. The long-term impacts of COVID-19 threaten to exacerbate this exclusion even further. The theme for IDPD this year is “Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world.”
There is no single way of celebrating this day. For example, you could visit a facility for the disabled individuals in your vicinity and spend some time with the residents over there. Or, you could raise awareness about the importance of this day in your friends and family circle. Make people realize that the disabled have issues that go unheard in most cases! You can raise awareness online as well by tweeting or posting on other social media platforms about the IDPD 2021. And if you are looking for an organization that is fighting for the disabled with unparalleled enthusiasm, we have got a name that you can consider! Friends of Paraplegics (FOP)
Friends of Paraplegics (FOP) is a non-government, not for profit, and non-political organization, striving for the rights, issues and well-being of People with Disabilities (PWD’s) in general and People with Spinal Cord Injuries in particular. Since its inception, FOP marked 3rd of December the annual observance of the International Day of Persons with Disability and made contribution to advocacy efforts with the disability community in the Pakistan.
Now that we are all on the same page with regards to disability, let us talk about the event that is reserved for disabled persons worldwide. We are talking about the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, or to use the abbreviation, IDPD. The day is one of the rare occasions on which the entire world comes together and speaks in unison about the issues that are faced by disabled individuals. It is pertinent to mention here that as opposed to the general notion, the set of challenges faced by disabled individuals is much bigger than just the mobility issues. Inclusiveness, integrity, access to basic rights, and certain privileges that are fundamental rights of disabled persons are some of the key challenges faced by the disabled community worldwide. IDPD is an event that is all about voicing the concerns of the disabled community on a global level so that these issues get noticed on the highest possible levels.
This week there’s a celebration for people with disabilities, (PWD) headed our way, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, IDPD on December 3rd. Ever since 1992 this day has been a bit of a people with disabilities ballyhoo, globally. The Friends of Paraplegics (FOP) hosts a day long happening at their headquarter, aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities, full of activities like: Wheelchair basketball, Darts, Thug of war, Prize distribution AND Awareness walk to bring attention to greater advocacy action for connecting and creating access for PWD into society.
Beyond the shadow of a doubt, for Friends of Paraplegics (FOP), it will be a long journey, but we hope we will be able to fully realize the rights of persons with disabilities here in this country one day, beginning with local efforts towards greater implementation.
We encourage you to review the resource above and learn how you can do your part to create a more accessible world. While the pandemic is an unfortunate reality, together we have the collective power to create a path toward an inclusive recovery.
Allocation for the Persons with Different Abilities in the Local Government
An estimate of over 1 billion people is experiencing disabilities in the world according to World Health Organization (WHO). Alongside, these 1 billion disabled are those whose has been limited in executing chief chore in daily life. This limitation has been brought about by the deficiency of a conventional part of their physique, including, deafness, blindness, intellectual disability, and physical disability. In Pakistan, there are certain benefits that have been given to the people positioned with disabilities and they have contributed quite competently to society. Similarly, the federal and provincial government has allocated and ensured special quota for disabled people however they have no gain in the Local Government.
Pakistan has been witnessed to several experiments in empowering local communities. Various political parties have introduced different local government systems. A new system was introduced by the military regime in the early 2000s and improvement in service delivery outcomes was claimed. However, elected governments showed no interest in its continuation beyond 2008. After the subject was delegated to provinces and the Supreme Court of Pakistan issued directions in this regard the provinces came up with various laws.
The key issue in rule-based governance, one may argue, is the absence of a citizen-based democracy. A politically divisive hybrid democracy works for the benefit of few at the cost of many. And the social exclusion that it creates widens the gulf between the government and the common citizens. And more importantly, despite being conditionally weak persons with disabilities give a full spin of their blood to the community. Although they may be weak to perform physically, besides they are well enough to perform politically or socially. Political advance for the disabled is very mandatory in the local government. Because this is the initial step for the disabled to establish their political career. Political contribution for the disabled is as much important as for the non-disable. As everyone has the right to take part or stand in a political election which means that everyone can be a candidate in an election. A person with a disability should also be able to be the candidate, if he or she fulfills the conditions, as other citizens. This means that citizens can vote for you in an election. When you get enough votes, you become their representative. This way the disabled community will have their representative in the parliament and he/she can represent the emerges and affairs that strike the life of the disabled community. The political contribution of the disabled will allow the disabled community to have a say in the way their country is run.
In Pakistan, particularly in KPK many organizations are active to legalize the political career for the disabled community, for this purpose the FRIENDS of PARAPLEGICS (FOP) which is a non-government, not for profit, and non-political organization registered with the Directorate of social welfare, Govt. of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, under the (VSWA) ordinance XLVI of 1961, striving for the rights, issue, and well-being of people with the Disabilities (PWD’S) in general and people with spinal cards injuries particular. They have recently submitted a petition to the KP government to legitimatize special seats for the disabled in the local government. They are working conscientiously to make sure the political dignity and sustainability for the disabled in Pakistan. Their only vision is to come up with all those initiatives and measurements towards empowerment and self-determination of community people enable them to solve their socio-economic problems by themselves toward poverty elevation and prompt them to engage actively and should never confine.
Without consideration, this community has to be empowered in all aspects not only politically or economically. But most competently they need to be politically developed and this is what FOP demands in their petition which they have submitted to allocated special seats for the disabled in the local government. Conducting special seats for them in the local government will allow them to have their representative who can understand all the discomfort and affliction faced by any member of the disabled community and immediately that representative can take steps against those sufferings. KP government must join their hands with the FOP and should agree to allocate special seats for them in the local government so that this community will proceed with their lives with dignity.