Speaking at a Hanoi conference on the role and contributions of PwDs in the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), Tamesis noted that 2022 marked the 30th anniversary of the International Day of PwDs (December 3) and the eighth year since Vietnam joined the Convention on the Rights of PwDs.
She lauded Vietnam’s big strides in promoting the rights and social integrations of PwDs, citing data from the latest country report submitted to the UN Committee for Rights of PwDs as showing that in the past decade, Vietnam exerted great efforts to increase the accessibility for people with disabilities.
Many buildings and public transport vehicles have become more friendly to PwDs, she noted.
However, she held that Vietnam has still faced many difficulties in ensuring the rights of PwDs, as 17.8% of those people are living in poor families, while many schools, especially in the rural areas, are countering a lack of teachers specialising in caring for children with special needs, and many companies have yet to equipped themselves with the infrastructure and technologies that enable them to employ PwDs.
The employment of PwDs should not be considered as charity, nor as a privilege, but as a guarantee of the right to work which benefits everyone, she stated.
This year, the UN Partnership on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNPRPD) project has played an important role in changing the attitude and improving capacity for policy influencers and service providers, while providing legal and policy through consultations, and raising community awareness about inclusion and equality for PwDs, she said.
Meanwhile, UNFPA Representative in Vietnam Naomi Kitahara underlined that young people with disabilities should enjoy sexual and reproductive health rights and body autonomy, and a life free from discrimination or violence. The UN in Vietnam is committed to supporting people with disabilities towards accessibility and equality in the country and the whole world, she said.
Conference participants highly valued the active and resilient participation and important contributions of PwD community in the development of their country and the globe.