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Employment of People with Disabilities
Source: BuaNews
Source Date: Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Focus: Citizen Engagement
Country: South Africa
Created: Dec 14, 2011

Speaking at the official event in Bloemfontein to commemorate the day, the minister urged employers to work vigorously to achieve the target. She gaged that South Africa had only achieved a 1% employment rate for people with disabilities, but was hopeful the target would be reached next year.

The minister encouraged all disabled job-seekers to register with the Department of Labour and with employment agencies. She called on the private sector to actively get involved in employing people with disabilities.

This year, the day was celebrated under the theme 'Together for a better world for all including persons with disabilities in development'.

Free State Premier Ace Magashule invited representatives of people with disabilities to contact his office to discuss their needs. He also conceded that nothing much has been done for people with disabilities.

"This day reminds us that we need to do more for people with disabilities," he said.

IDPwD was established in 1992 by the United Nations General Assembly to promote awareness of disability issues and the abilities of people living with disabilities. It is celebrated worldwide on 3 December annually.

The day is set aside to celebrate the achievements of people with disabilities and aims to promote an understanding of disability issues, and mobilise support for the dignity, rights and well-being of people with disabilities by engaging disability organisations, people with disabilities, businesses, governments and communities in a range of activities.

Since the day coincides with the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence against Women and Children campaign, the minister called on South Africans to take up the challenge to protect women and children and in particular, women and children with disabilities.

Persons with disabilities encounter many disadvantages in their societies and are often subjected to stigma and discrimination. They remain largely marginalised, disproportionately poorer, frequently unemployed and have higher rates of mortality.
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