The rights of disabled people continue to be infringed. This is according to the National Council for Persons with Physical Disabilities in South Africa’s Communications and Public Relations Manager Neo Tlaka.
The organisation works with Non-Governmental Organisations across South Africa to promote and raise awareness around issues affecting people with disabilities.
South Africa celebrates Human Rights Day annually on 21 March. This year it is celebrated under the theme; “The year of Nelson Rholihlahla Mandela: Promoting and Deepening a Human Rights Culture”. The national celebration is taking place in Sharpeville, Gauteng.
Tlaka says the needs of those who are disabled continue to be overlooked.
“Children are not being accommodated for within schools as well, if you are taken to a school that is not fully accessible and you are in a wheelchair you have to be forced to go to another school, that is an infringement of your right because it seems that you have to go to a special school meanwhile there is nothing wrong with it. “
Tlaka says the fact that South African schools are not well-equipped to accommodate the disabled is cause for concern.
“They do not have ramps for wheelchair users, the toilets are not accommodative enough and that is why I say society is disabled more than people with disabilities. If you are a person that has a hearing impairment I would love for the class to have a looping system. Government has to reach a point where they take all these things into consideration to ensure that all classrooms consider and take into mind the full inclusion of people with disabilities.