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Government Action on Disability Policy
A Global Survey
Part II - Government Replies as Country Profiles

Honduras

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© Dimitris Michailakis 1997

Transmitted by Permanent Mission to the United Nations, New York (25 June 1996)
General policy

The officially recognized disability policy in Honduras is expressed in law and in guidelines adopted by a national disability council. The emphasis - in descending scale - is on: prevention, rehabilitation, accessibility measures, individual support, anti-discrimination law.

Since the adoption of the rules the Government has not done anything to convey the message of full participation.

Legislation

The rights of persons with disabilities are protected by special and general legislation. The judicial mechanism adopted to protect the rights of persons with disabilities is recourse procedure by a special agency dealing with anti-discrimination issues. Non-judicial mechanisms include an Ombudsman.

The general legislation applies to persons with different disabilities with respect to education and employment. The following benefits are guaranteed by law to persons with disabilities: health and medical care, training, rehabilitation and counselling and employment.

No new legislation concerning disability has been enacted since the adoption of the Rules.

Accessibility

There are no laws and regulations ensuring accessibility of the build environment. No measures have been promoted by the Government in order to facilitate accessibility in the build environment. There is no special transport. When planning to build accessible environments the most difficult obstacles are economic/budgetary factors, geographical and climatic factors, lack of legislation and regulations, lack of knowledge, research and information, and lack of enforcement mechanisms. There is no disability awareness component incorporated in the training of planners, architects and construction engineers.

Sign language for deaf people has no officially recognized status. There are no Government measures for encouraging media to make their information services accessible for persons with disabilities. There are Government measures to make other forms of public information services accessible for persons with disabilities. The following services are provided in order to facilitate information and communication between persons with disabilities and others: literature in Braille/tape, and sign language interpretation for major events.

Organizations of persons with disabilities

There is no national umbrella organization. There are no Government measures mandating the representatives of persons with disabilities to participate in policy-making and to work with Governmental institutions. Organizations are sometimes consulted when laws and regulations with a disability aspect are being prepared. Consultations take place at the regional and local levels. The Government gives financial and organizational/logistic support to existing or new organizations. Persons with disabilities participate to a very limited extent in Government, legislature, judicial authorities and in political parties but to a great extent in NGOs. The organizations have the role to advocate rights and improved services, mobilize persons with disabilities, contribute to public awareness, provide services, and promote/organize income generating activities.

Co-ordination of work

There is a national co-ordinating committee reporting to the Ministry of Labour. The committee includes representatives from the NGOs and the private sector. It does not include representatives from the various Ministries and from the organizations of persons with disabilities. The Government expects the co-ordinating committee to participate in policy-development and to perform other tasks. The establishment of the co-ordinating committee has had the following effects: improved co-ordination of measures/programmes in the disability field, improved integration of responsibility, a better dialogue in the disability field, more effective use of resources, and improved promotion of public awareness.

The adoption of the Rules has not led to a rethinking of the approach to disability policy.


Contents of the UN Report