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The Real Disability is Inequality - Disability As a Basis of Inequality

By Shaili Makwana

According to World Bank and WHO, people with disabilities do experience inequality in several ways: difficulty in access to health care facilities, employment, and education because of the way they physically are. They face significant discrimination and exclusion.

In order to leave nobody behind, Mr.Ban, the Secretary General of UN declared a new promising agenda for people to eradicate poverty for the world to make it one home.

Disability is referenced in various components of the Sustainable Development Goals especially in areas concerning employment, education, and inequality.

Goal 4 which focuses on inclusive and equitable quality education stresses on eliminating gender disparities in education and ensuring equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable, including persons with disabilities and provide safe, non-violent, inclusive and effective learning environments for all. • Goal 8 talks about promotion of sustained, inclusive economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for everyone, including for individuals with disabilities ensuring equal pay for all.

Goal 11 would work to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe and sustainable. To realize this goal, Member States are asked to provide access to safe, inexpensive, accessible and sustainable public transport system services for all keeping in mind the needs of the vulnerable individuals like disabled people.

Goal 17 calls upon Member States to develop capacity-building support to developing countries LDCs and SIDS, which would significantly increase the availability of highquality, timely and reliable data that is also disaggregated by disability.

If one were to talk about India, it is a country that accounts for around 80 million disabled population and as per World Bank, 1 in every 12 households in India has a disabled person. India has almost 70% unemployment rate when it comes to disabled population.

Studies say that due to the social stigmas and societal constraints, these people do not have access to quality education.

A study carried out by Economic Times brought to light how HUL has 200 people with disabilities in its workforce. HUL is aiming to create a wholesome environment for these people by the end of 2022and recruit more and more people. Companies like Flipkart, Infosys, Lemon Tree Hotels have also stepped to attain these goals for inclusivity. Companies are now viewing disabled individuals as a great asset for their company due to the fall in attrition rates of such employees and their string loyalty. Companies like KPMG are allotting more and more resources in terms of management to pioneer such inclusion and attract the right talent.

Right from work places designing to restroom designing, there has been huge focus by these companies for disabled individuals. Flipkart’s parent Walmart has PwDs working as managers, team leads and floor-associates. IndiGo has 10 employees with reduced mobility working across operational and administrative roles.

Hence, more and more companies in India are trying to pioneer change especially when it concerns about employment for disabled individuals. However at the Government level, concrete plans for inclusion need to be developed to make sure these individuals are not looked down upon but considered “normal” of their own kind.

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