Independent Living Institute


Government Implementation of the Standard Rules
As Seen By Member Organizations of
World Federation of the Deaf - WFD


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© Dimitris Michailakis 1997

Latvian Association of the Deaf, Latvia
No reply was received from the Government of Latvia.
Compare with the following Country Report(s): WBU

General policy

The officially recognized disability policy in Latvia is expressed in law. The emphasis in this policy is on rehabilitation. Since the adoption of the Rules, the government has not done anything to initiate or support information campaigns, conveying the message of full participation.


The rights of persons with disabilities are protected by special legislation. The judicial mechanism adopted to protect the rights of persons with disabilities is due process (legal remedy through courts). There are no administrative or other non-judicial bodies for that purpose. General legislation applies to persons with different disabilities with respect to education and the right to marriage. The following benefits are guaranteed by law to persons with disabilities: health and medical care, training, rehabilitation and counselling and independent living. No new legislation concerning disability has been enacted, since the adoption of the Rules.


There are no laws, regulations and/or guidelines to ensure accessibility of the built environment. No measures have been promoted to facilitate accessibility in the built environment. There are no special transport arrangements for persons with disabilities. 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, is not used as the first language in education of deaf people, nor recognized as the main means of communication between deaf persons and others. Three are government measures to encourage media to make their services accessible to persons with disabilities but no government measures to encourage other forms of public information to make their services accessible to persons with disabilities. The following services are provided to facilitate information and communication between persons with disabilities and others: literature in Braille, news magazines on tape/Braille and sign language interpretation being available only for major events.

Organizations of persons with disabilities

There is no national umbrella organization of persons with disabilities. There are no legal provisions mandating the representatives of persons with disabilities to participate in policy-making or to work with governmental institutions. Organizations of persons with disabilities are never consulted, when laws and regulations with a disability aspect are being prepared. Persons with disabilities participate to a very limited extent in government, legislatures, judicial authorities, but to a great extent in political parties and NGOs. The role of disabled persons organisations is to advocate rights and improved services, mobilize persons with disabilities, identify needs and priorities and participate in the planning, implementation and evaluation of services and measure concerning the lives of persons with disabilities.

Co-ordination of work

There is no national co-ordinating committee or any similar body.
The adoption of the Rules has not led to a rethinking of the approach to disability policy.

Contents of the WFD Report | Compare with the following Country Report(s): WBU