Disability Society Pleased By Preparation For Sections 13 & 14 Of The Disability Act
The Disability Society says it is pleased to see the Government working with the business community to prepare for Sections 13 and 14 of the Disability Act but have highlighted that the steps currently being taken “could, and should have been, started when the Disability Act was first implemented”.
A statement from the Disability Society follows below:
The Disability Society is extremely proud to have been the driving force behind the Disability Act (2017). It is a great honour to have the Act affectionately referred to as "Agnes' Law", in honour of our late Chairperson Agnes Valarino.
The Society is pleased to see the Government working hard with the business community to prepare for the effect Sections 13 & 14 of the Act will have. However, the Society feels that these steps which are
currently being taken by Government could, and should have been, started when the Disability Act was first implemented or in the 5 years since; something we have, on numerous occasions, publicly called for. The Society sincerely hopes this is a sign of the imminent implementation of Section 13 & 14 meaning the Disability Act will finally be complete.
The Society would further suggest the Equal Opportunity Act should be extended to also apply to the provision of services to persons with disabilities. The collapse of the Government's Supported Employment for persons with disabilities is also a huge concern. A Supported Employment Company, run by qualified staff would have the ability to advise employers, as well as support those with disabilities in our community who are desperate to find jobs. The fact that Minister Bossano did not acknowledge the Disability Society's offer to meet and share our expertise did not bode well for Supported Employment at its conception.
The Disability Society cannot encourage the business community enough to take up any offer of support or information from the Ministry of Equality, the Gibraltar Federation of Small Businesses, or the Chamber of Commerce.
Equality and inclusion are the only way forward!