Minister of Human Services and Social Security, Dr Vindhya Persaud reaffirmed the government’s commitment to creating a society where Guyanese, especially persons living with disabilities can benefit from equal rights and opportunities.
“A nation is judged by how it treats its most vulnerable populations,” Minister Persaud stated this week, at the general debate of the 16th Session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The event is being hosted at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, under the theme “Harmonising national policies and strategies with the CRPD: achievements and challenges.”
Minister Persaud emphasised the importance of understanding and recognising the unique challenges faced by persons living with disabilities.
As such, the government has embarked on a mission to ensure that their human rights are respected, resilience is fostered, and barriers are broken down through significant budgetary allocations and the implementation of multifaceted programmes.
“This is based on the understanding that for independence, equal participation, personal growth, and access must be a lived reality. Central to this is the meaningful engagement of persons living with disabilities in the development of policies and programmes and decision-making,” she said.
These efforts are being realised through a life course approach, where children with disabilities are now recorded in a database, paving the way for research, and effective and timely health and education interventions.
There is also training of individuals to provide specialised care to persons living with disabilities, coupled with the development of day and night care facilities, as well as early childhood centres across the country.
In addition, persons living with a permanent disability are receiving monthly financial assistance until they qualify for an automatic old-age pension.
The government also provides free assistive aids to encourage participation in everyday school, work and life activities.
Meanwhile, the minister said the government is dedicated and as a result, Guyana is poised to become a beacon of hope and empowerment for all its citizens, regardless of their abilities.
The conference commenced on June 13 and concludes today, June 15. (Modified from the Department of Public Information).