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People with disabilities still have difficulties in Kyrgyzstan

It is necessary to change the attitude of society towards people with disabilities in Kyrgyzstan. UNICEF Representative in the Kyrgyz Republic, Yukie Mokuo, stated this at a press conference.

«When we talk about children with disabilities, we often talk about their limitations. However, these are limitations of our consciousness in relation to them. Therefore, we need to change the focus. We must pay attention primarily to their abilities and potential. For their development, Kyrgyzstan needs to reform its protocol. The sooner you start helping children develop, especially with features, the better the result will be. Families need support from health and social workers, psychologists, teachers, local government officials and the civil sector,» she said.

Yukie Mokuo noted that the understanding of the rights of people with disabilities is very low in Kyrgyzstan. Only 40 percent of children with disabilities have access to education.

«Stigma for people with disabilities still exists. It is necessary to change the attitude of society so that people with disabilities can fully and actively participate in society,» the UNICEF Representative in the Kyrgyz Republic added.

The deputy of the Parliament, Natalia Nikitenko, noted that the rights of people with disabilities were fully protected in Kyrgyzstan from the point of view of legislation.

«But we are well aware that in practice, Kyrgyzstanis with disabilities have a very difficult time both with access to educational services and in professional activities. This is especially true of the regions. Therefore, an important step is the ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,» she noted.

Natalia Nikitenko noted that Kyrgyzstan has signed it back in 2011, but has not yet ratified it.

«This document accurately and clearly defines the whole set of measures that allow a Kyrgyz citizen with disabilities to live fully in a comfortable community. For a long time, the government did not submit the convention for ratification, citing costs. According to calculations, about 30 billion soms will be needed for its implementation within 10 years,» she noted.

Natalia Nikitenko added that the deputies of the Parliament have repeatedly raised the issue and this year the bill has finally been submitted for public discussion.