The Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) is celebrating the International Day of Disabled Persons today with education and service events.
The Kurdistan Region will celebrate International Day of Disabled Persons on Tuesday (December 3) with education and service events, while some groups will hold protests to highlight the challenges faced by disabled persons in the Region.
At a ceremony in Erbil, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs is expected to give out rewards pf appreciation to organizations working on behalf of disabled persons, according to NRT reporters.
Two local organizations will give out wheelchairs and other equipment to disabled persons in Region’s capital city.
In Sulaimani, a dedicated resource room for blind and visually impaired people will be opened at the Public Library.
Two other civil organizations in Halabja will hold events to provide assistance for disabled persons, an NRT reporter said.
The official ceremonies belie the fact that many in the disabled community face discrimination and difficulty in obtaining employment and public aid.
A number of graduates who are blind will stage a protest in Sulaimani against unemployment.
In 2011, the Kurdistan Parliament adopted a law of rights for disabled persons. Critics argue, however, that it has not had the intended effect and many still live in substandard conditions.
There are regular protests in the Kurdistan Region by disabled persons against government austerity policies that they say have made it more difficult for them to obtain public benefits and live a dignified life.
There are nearly 125,000 people with disabilities in the Kurdistan Region, according to statistics cited by the People with Disabilities Union of Kurdistan.