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 of Foreign Affairs (6 March 1996)
Compare with the following Country Report(s): WBU
The rights of persons with disabilities are protected by general legislation. There are no judicial mechanisms adopted to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. The only mechanism available is an Ombudsman for all citizens.
None of the rights and benefits enlisted in the questionnaire are guaranteed by law to persons with disabilities. No new legislation has been enacted since the adoption of the Standard Rules.
There are no laws, regulations and/or guidelines ensuring accessibility in the build environment. There is no special transport. There is no disability awareness component in the training of planners, architects and construction engineers.
Sign language for deaf people is used as the first language in education of deaf people. Government measures for encouraging media and other forms of public information to make their services accessible are at the stage of planning. No services are provided in order to facilitate information and communication between persons with disabilities and other persons.
Organizations of persons with disabilities
There is a national umbrella organization, organizations of people with mental disabilities not being represented. There are no legal provisions mandating the representatives of persons with disabilities to participate in policy-making or to work with Governmental institutions. Organizations are always consulted when laws and regulations with a disability aspect are being prepared. This occurs at both national, regional and local level. The only support given to organizations is the financing by the Government for their accommodation and meals when attending meetings organized by the Government. Persons with disabilities do not at all participate in Government, legislature and political parties. They participate to a very limited extent in judiciary and NGOs. The organizations in Namibia have the role to: mobilize persons with disabilities, identify needs and priorities, contribute to public awareness and promote/organize income generating activities.
Co-ordination of work
There is a national co-ordinating committee (the Technical Working Committee), reporting to the Ministry of lands Resettlement and Rehabilitation. The committee includes representatives of the Ministries of Justice, Health and social affairs, Employment, Education, Culture, from organizations of persons with disabilities, from other NGOs, and of the private sector. The Government expects the committee to participate in policy development but not to perform other tasks. Improved legislation is the effect of the committee.
According to the Government the adoption of the Standard Rules has led to a rethinking of the approach to disability policy.
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