Collaborative efforts essential for socio-economic mainstreaming of PWDs: NA speaker

ISLAMABAD – Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser has said that collaborative efforts are required for ensuring inclusive, accessible, and sustainable future of persons with disabilities (PWDs). 
“Parliament is a platform where all social welfare organisations, which are taking steps for the welfare of PWDs can be facilitated,” said Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser, addressing the ceremony of International Day of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) “Leadership and Participation of Persons with Disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world.”
He said Parliament of Pakistan is fully cognizant of socio-economic challenges faced by PWDs in the society. 
Qaiser said that differently-abled people have immense potential and energy to contribute to the progress of the country. He said that they are capable to perform all tasks but they need encouragement and assistance to make them productive part of the society. He said that facilitating the people with disabilities has been the priority of incumbent government and the government is taking various steps to provide equal access to education and health and other basic facilities to them. 
While appreciating the achievements of National Assembly Special Committee on PWDs, Speaker Asad Qaiser said that there are a lot of organizations which are striving for facilitating PWDs and it has been his effort to bring all efforts in one direction on the platform of Parliament.  He also resolved to support all welfare organisations which are trying to bring positive changes in the lives of PWDs. He also expressed his desire that welfare villages on the pattern of Alamabad city should be replicated across the country.   
MNA Zila Huma said that special committee on PWDs appointed by Speaker National Assembly made remarkable progress by suggesting and recommending policy measures in providing fundamental facilities to differently-abled people. She said that the committee is working constructively to ensure that every person with a disability shall have an equal opportunity to participate in all spheres of life without any discrimination. She said that it is first Parliament in Commonwealth countries which has been made accessible for PWDs.
Country Director UNFPA Dr. Bahktior Kadirov said that socio-economic inclusion of the PWDs would make them productive segment of society. He also appreciated the initiatives taken by special Parliamentary committee on the welfare of PWDs.
Later, Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser launched accessibility of the Parliament House building and the accessibility of the National Assembly official website for PWDs besides unveiling the full version of the Braille Constitution of Pakistan. A special documentary regarding initiatives for socio-economic inclusion of PWDs by Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser was also displayed. 

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