First Lady Begum Samina Alvi on Saturday stressed upon the need of paying special attention to the rights of the persons with disabilities (PWDs) so that they should not lag behind in playing their effective role in the society.
The First lady, in a message on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities being observed on December 3, said that over one billion people of the world’s population suffered from some form of disability.
She observed that PWDs were not handicapped, but they possessed slightly different capabilities. They possessed certain capacities like other ordinary people.
She said it was a collective responsibility of all to encourage the PWDs to become effective members of the society.
Begum Alvi also stressed upon the business community to provide employment opportunities to the PWDs according to the quota and their talents. They should also provide safe and friendly environment to the PWDs at the places of jobs.
Due to the existence of certain hurdles in the social, physical and basic infrastructure, the PWDs were deprived of the quality educational and health facilities, she added.
She called upon the nation to provide all possible support and facilities to the PWDs in their surroundings and include them in their daily life activities by safeguarding their rights.
She appealed to the media to highlight the rights of the PWDs and dispel and discourage the negative attitudes and stereotypes in the society, adding it was regrettable that persons with disabilities were kept aloof from the mainstream of society.
The first lady further observed that PWDs had to face numerous issues in their ordinary life, including access and movement in different buildings due to lack of proper facilities and ramps. Moreover, they had to face differences and negative attitudes in the society.
Begum Alvi expressed the optimism that with joint efforts, they would be able to diffuse the negative attitude attached with disabilities.