Ramallah \ ICHR carried out in cooperation with Daikonia five training courses in the different governorates of the West Bank and Gaza under the title of “Conduct’s Rules and Skills of Dealing with PWD”. The training courses targeted more than 125 participants representing public sector organizations, especially the Ministry of Social Affairs, Ministry of Local Government, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor, Ministry of Transportation and Governors’ Offices. It also targeted relevant civil society organizations, especially those concerned with psychological and occupational rehabilitation in addition to representatives of the General Union of PWD and disabled persons.
The training courses focused on several topics related to disability issues including international standards and international covenants on the rights of PWD and international agreement of the rights of PWD which is comprehensive and integrated pointing out the basic rights of PWD including the civil, political, economic, cultural and social rights under article 31 thereof.
National legislations pertaining to the rights of PWD such as disabled rights law number 4 of 1999 and relevant regulations were highlighted in these training courses. Equality, non-discrimination, prohibited bases of discrimination, protection of special categories (women, children), status of PWD in Palestine, indexes and numbers, national policies related to protection and promotion of the rights of PWD were also discussed. Furthermore, an overview of the role of ICHR and the nature of its function and jurisdiction with regard to reviewing the national legislations and policies besides mechanisms of monitoring and documenting violation of the rights of PWD were presented in these training courses.
These training courses in which the staff of ICHR participated are held while ICHR prepares to launch comprehensive national inquiry about PWD to look into the different aspects of their life and to validate all the concepts and values of human rights in the Palestinian society. ICHR planned during 2012 to launch this process to highlight PWD’s rights to employment in the Palestinian territories through ICHR’s vision of work and promote their rights by engaging them in this plan in compliance with their right to self-determination, shaping their future, achieving their aspirations of exercising their rights, enforcing the relevant laws and legislations being persons with the ability to give and to be productive and effective changing people’s view that they constitute a burden on the society. The national inquiry also aims to contribute to building a national strategy to promote the opportunity of enabling them to obtain their rights to employment and rehabilitation on the basis of equity of opportunity and non-discrimination in accordance with international standards especially the convention on the rights of PWD of 2006 in addition to the national standards stated under the law of the right of the disabled number 4 of 1999 with more emphasis on public job. It also puts more emphasis on the public organizations commitment to including 5% among their staffs PWD in accordance with article 12, paragraph 4 of the regulation of this law which states that all public and private organizations should employ not less than 5% of their staffs PWD in a manner that matches the nature of the work of these organizations.
A number of disabled participants noted during these courses that more training courses of this kind should be held to target other sectors of the society to contribute to changing the traditional view of “pity and benevolence”.
Islam Tamimi, coordinator of national inquiry into the rights of PWD including these training courses said that ‘these training courses come in the context of ICHTR’s efforts to publish and generalize the culture of human rights within the frame of the strategic plan aimed at building its staff’s capacities, developing their performance and skills in handling issues of different categories within the range of human rights movement’s interest and realization of the impact of interaction and cooperation and networking among PWD’s associations and human rights organizations working in Palestine’. He added that ‘they are held in the context of ICHR’s awareness of the importance of forming a lobbying force, conviction of the benefit of experience sharing and learning from strengths and weaknesses of different national experiences and belief in the benefit of expanding this phenomenon to reach out to human rights organizations instead of being limited to the sector of PWD’s organizations.