Proposed amendments to RCI Act is not going to do justice to folks with disabilities: Rights teams

New Delhi, January 18 (PTI) Over 20 disability rights organizations have written to the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment stating that the proposed changes to the 1992 Rehabilitation Council Act of India do not address the needs and aspirations of people with disabilities.

The government proposed the amendments to the law last month, stating that the need arose in light of developments in the rehabilitation and education sectors.

In a public announcement, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MSJ&E) proposed that the Rehabilitation Council of India (RCI) provide “accessible”, “high quality” and “affordable” rehabilitation and rehabilitation education through amendments to the law . regulate the implementation of such training, meet the demand of highly qualified professionals and personnel in all parts of the country.

Disability rights organizations, including the National Center for the Promotion of Employment of People with Disabilities, the National Association of the Deaf and the Indian Institute for Cerebral Palsy, said the proposed changes do not reflect the perceived needs of people with disabilities, as well as the type and number of people skilled and qualified human resources necessary to meet these needs.

“The amendments appear to propose that the RCI should become a self-sustaining body within four years. It is likely that the financial burden for people with disabilities as well as professionals involved in the facility for registration / training will be reduced by Meaning will be negative effects on the quality of rehabilitation services, “they said.

In a letter to Shakuntla D Gamlin, secretary, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, the organizations said the 2020 National Education Policy (NEP) recognized the country’s tenacious regulatory system, which strongly advocates independent empowered bodies, academic standards and accreditation set and regulatory mechanisms in higher education.

“To this end, the Indian Higher Education Commission was envisaged. The proposed changes are inconsistent with these provisions in NEP 2020,” it said.

The groups also said that the proposed changes do not address the need for and access to mental health services.

“The proposed changes do not include such analysis and do not reflect human resource needs at different levels. They take into account the needs of people with different disabilities and disciplines, including skills development as foreseen in the 2015 National Skills Development Policy. ” read the letter.

In addition, the RCI must be seen as an academic body, concerned with the development of trained and effective human resources at all levels of service delivery, ie community, intermediate and tertiary levels.

“We would like to highlight one of the main gaps in the proposed changes, namely the negation of the fundamental principles of UNCRPD (United National Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities) and RPDA (Law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2016) – the participation of people with disabilities in general, and by health professionals with disabilities in particular, has not been taken into account when drafting the amendments, nor has it been included in the proposed offices / committees to act as part of the Act, “it said.

The rights groups also found that at least 60 to 80 amendments to the 1992 RCI Act recognized the “archaic” nature of the law.

“Not only do these need to be revised, but additional clauses need to be added to make them more comprehensive, progressive and in line with other laws and guidelines,” they said.

“With all of this in mind, we urge you to convene a national consultation under a government-appointed empowered committee representing people with disabilities and other stakeholders to develop a new law. The amendment process does not do it justice Needs and aspirations of people with disabilities and the government’s commitment to the 2016 RPWD Act, NEP 2020 and other initiatives by other ministries, “the letter added.


Disclaimer: – This story was not edited by Outlook staff and is automatically generated from news agency feeds. Source: PTI

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