GOVERNMENT DEDICATED TO ASSISTING PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

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Minister of Social Care, Constituency Empowerment, Urban and Rural Development, Christopher Sinckler, shows his appreciation for one of the preformances featured during the National Organisation for the Disabled’s (BARNOD’s) 25th Anniversary Concert.

Over the next financial year, Government will be doing more to assist members of the disabled community and will be putting systems in place to ratify the United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

That is the word from Minister of Social Care, Constituency Empowerment, Urban and Rural Development, Christopher Sinckler. He was speaking last weekend at the National Organisation for the Disabled’s (BARNOD’s) 25th Anniversary Concert, “Sparks of Silver”, at the Hugh Springer Auditorium, Solidarity House, Harmony Hall, St. Michael.

Noting that the issues and concerns of persons with disabilities (PWDs) were human issues and therefore those of the society, he said his “Ministry continues to be in the forefront of efforts to encourage persons with disabilities … to advocate for better working, living and playing conditions”.

In this regard, Minister Sinckler revealed that the Ministry was able to “successfully garner the support of the Ministry of Finance to increase the budget of the National Disabilities Unit (NDU) by 40%”.

“These additional resources will go a long way, particularly in assisting with lifestyle issues, housing, health care, assistive devices and also ensuring that those organisations, such as BARNOD and others will continue to get subventions and in some cases increased subventions from the Ministry,” he remarked.

The Minister also disclosed that additional resources, previously put into the Poverty Alleviation Bureau, would be disbursed among the major social agencies and the NDU stood to gain another $300,000 in the coming financial year. “So we want to ensure this year that we have enough resources to do what we have to do to maintain, increase and enhance, where possible, those efforts that we are making in this particular area,” he said.

Mr. Sinckler further divulged that Government would be putting structures in place so that Barbados could ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and encouraged members of the disabled community to join the fight in making it a reality.

“I urge you to join with me to advocate, because you too have to help us to advocate with the other Ministries to ensure that they will have to bring us up to scratch. Government’s departments have to be raised in terms of how they treat persons with disabilities, how they interact, how they encourage them and what processes they put in place to assist persons with disabilities…. So you have to help me to advocate across the Government to ensure that we raise those standards…,” he stressed. 

emcclean@barbados.gov.bb

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