Government Action on Disability Policy
A Global Survey
Part II - Government Replies as Country Profiles
Download 'Government Reports on the UN Standard Rules' as a PDF file (440 KB)
© Dimitris Michailakis 1997
Ministry unspecified (7 May 1996)
The officially recognized disability policy in Georgia is expressed: in law, in guidelines adopted by the Government and in policy adopted by NGOs. The emphasis - in descending scale - is on: rehabilitation, individual support, anti-discrimination law.
After the adoption of the Standard Rules the Government adopted the Law on Social Protection of the Persons with Disabilities, which embodies the principles of the Standard Rules.
The rights of persons with disabilities are protected by special legislation specifically dealing with disability matters. The judicial mechanism adopted to protect the rights of persons with disabilities includes due process (legal remedy through courts), and a recourse procedure by a special agency dealing with anti-discrimination issues. Non-judicial mechanisms include an Ombudsman, a Governmental body (administrative) and independent expert bodies.
The general legislation applies to persons with different disabilities with respect to: education, employment, political rights, property rights. The following benefits are guaranteed by law to persons with disabilities: health and medical care, training, rehabilitation and counselling, financial support, employment, independent living, and participation in decisions affecting them.
The "Law about the Social Protection of Persons with Disabilities" and the "Law on Protection of Veterans of War and Armed Forces" have been adopted since the adoption of the Rules.
There are laws and regulations to ensure accessibility of the build environment requiring that public places, the outdoor environment, means of public transport, and housing are made accessible. Accessibility in the build environment is observed by a national authority, local Governments, the constructor, and the organizers/providers of services. The following measures have been promoted by the Government to facilitate accessibility in the build environment: levelling off pavements, marking parking areas, installing lifts, access to public places such as stadiums, commercial centres, theatres and shops, improving accessibility in housing, providing financial incentives/support for accessibility measures in housing and provision of specially adapted motor vehicles. There are special transport arrangements for persons with disabilities available only for medical treatment, work and recreational purpose. When planning to build accessible environments the most difficult obstacles are: economic/budgetary factors, technical factors, geographical and climatic factors, lack of co-operation from other organizations/institutions, and lack of enforcement mechanisms. There is a disability awareness component incorporated in the training of planners, architects and construction engineers.
Sign language for deaf people is recognized as the official language of deaf people. There are no Government measures for encouraging media to make their information services accessible. There are Government measures to make other forms of public information accessible. The following services are provided in order to facilitate information and communication between persons with disabilities and other persons: literature in Braille/tape, sign language interpretation being available for any purpose.
Organizations of persons with disabilities
There is a national umbrella organization of organizations of persons with disabilities. Legal provisions mandate the representatives of persons with disabilities to participate in policy-making and to work with Governmental institutions. Organizations are always consulted when laws and regulations with a disability aspect are being prepared. Consultations take place at the national level. The Government gives financial support to existing or new organizations of persons with disabilities. The disabled persons' organizations in Georgia have the role to: advocate rights and improved services, identify needs and priorities.
Co-ordination of work
There is no national co-ordinating committee or any similar body in Georgia.
The Government states that from the political point of view the adoption of the Standard Rules has "aroused interest for persons with disabilities".
Contents of the UN Report