Event organized within the framework of the First Lady’s Initiative “Without Barriers” and with the support of UNDP, the Governments of South Korea and Germany, and other partners.
Forum dedicated to Int’l Day of Persons with Disabilities stresses solutions through innovation
December 5, 2022
Kyiv, 5 December 2022 – With the aim to raise awareness of the need to promote the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities and to comprehensively include them in all spheres of social activity the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 3 December as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. To mark this day, the Minister of Social Policy of Ukraine organized the "Philosophy of Capacity" forum in Kyiv. The event focused on new state policies related to employment, rehabilitation, provision of social services and services for people with disabilities and their families, implementation of digital technologies for recovery and professional realization of people taking into account their needs caused by disability.
In her welcoming speech First Lady Olena Zelenska said the issue of social inclusion and rehabilitation of persons with disabilities has greater significance now for Ukraine than ever before, as the war has dramatically increased the number of people living with disabilities in Ukraine. “The focus of today’s discussion is the search for solution for our state, our society to make it possible for every person in Ukraine to live the fullest, to realize oneself, and to have no barriers,” she said.
Oksana Zholnovytch, Minister of Social Policy of Ukraine said that that day a new policy on the social integration of persons with disabilities was presented as seen through the ‘philosophy of capacity.’ “The capacity format is to provide every person in our society with the opportunity to develop freely, to supplement the common good and common development with their contribution, talent, and provision,” she said, “as well as the opportunity to be independent, independent of external support, independent of some kind of social benefits, economically capable.”
Zholnovytch said there are 2.7 million people with disabilities in Ukraine. However, only 15 percent of them are employed. “Ukrainian legislation regulating the employment of people with disabilities is outdated,” she said. “It lacks incentives for businesses to employ people with disabilities, and the procedures that enable employment of people with disabilities are too complicated. The new approach of inclusion of people with disabilities into active employment, which the Ministry is going to implement, will be based on simplification of procedures and encouragement for businesses to employ persons with disabilities.”
Jaco Cilliers, Interim UNDP Resident Representative said employment and rehabilitation are closely connected with and benefit from innovative solutions. “Innovation is the overarching theme for this year’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities,” he said. “Developing innovations, practical tools, and good practices can reduce inequalities and ensure inclusive development. UNDP stands ready further to support Ukraine in the development of policies and practices to ensure the full inclusion of persons with disabilities and the safeguarding of their rights.”
The event was organized within the framework of the First Lady’s Initiative “Without Barriers” and with the support of UNDP, the Governments of South Korea and Germany, and other partners.
Media inquiries: Yuliia Samus, Communications Team Leader, UNDP in Ukraine, email@example.com
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