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Voice Ghana calls for inclusion of PWDs in COVID-19 Vaccination Exercise

BY: KALD I Voltaonlinegh.com |

Disability Rights organisation, Voice Ghana has called on health authorities to include Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in the ongoing vaccination of Ghanaians against the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the group, adequate provisions must be made for the vaccination of PWDs especially those with mental health conditions, as the country and world at large battle the deadly virus.

‘The Ministry of Health and Ghana Health Service must ensure that the on-going vaccination exercise across the country, are held at accessible venues, and where necessary, sign language interpretation arrangements are made, to foster full participation by all categories of disability in the exercise,’ the Voice Ghana said in a statement signed by the Executive Director, Mr. Francis Ashong to commemorate this year’s International Day of People with Disabilities on Friday, December 3, 2021.

The day was observed on the theme, “Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world.”

The statement also entreated all persons with disabilities to avail themselves for the vaccination exercise in order to protect themselves against the virus.

Below is the full statement

As Ghanaians celebrate the country’s farmers and fishermen on this Farmers Day, let us also be reminded that today marks the International Day of People with Disabilities under the global theme: “Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world.”

VOICE Ghana joins the disability fraternity globally, particularly in Ghana as well as the international community, to bemoan the challenges and barriers being faced by people with disabilities including people with mental health conditions, especially during this time of COVID-19. In fact, we see disability inclusion as very essential for health system planning, development, and decision making in this critical time.

For this reason, we call on our government to prioritise the on-going COVID-19 vaccination for people with disabilities including people with mental health conditions. The Ministry of Health and Ghana Health Service must ensure that the on-going vaccination exercise across the country, are held at accessible venues, and where necessary, sign language interpretation arrangements are made, to foster full participation by all categories of disability in the exercise.

We also call on all and sundry, especially, people with disabilities including people with mental health conditions from age 15, and their families and caregivers, to take advantage of the on-going COVID-19 vaccination exercise, and get themselves vaccinated against this horrible invisible enemy.

To put the theme into local context, we call on the Ghanaian public, political leadership, traditional authorities, and religious organisations etc., to make conscious efforts in fostering inclusive environment for people with disabilities. to enable them take up leadership and decision-making roles in all spheres of society and community life. We also call on the general public, to start using positive non-discriminatory languages for people with disabilities including people with mental health conditions, and to relate with them with dignity and respect.

We hereby salute our hardworking farmers and fishermen on this Farmers’ Day. and congratulate award winners at all levels..

Established in 2002, VOICE Ghana is one of Ghana’s leading NGOs for people with disabilities. The organisation has recently transformed into a disability institute, and has a mandate of advancing inclusive development and social justice for people with disabilities including people with mental health conditions in Africa, particularly Ghana, through research, policy advocacy, and public consultations.

Signed on behalf of VOICE Ghana

Francis Asong Executive Director

Phone: 0243913183

Source: www.voltaonlinegh.com

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