The Deaf Women Association of Nigeria (DWAN) has urged the Federal Government to carry its members along in the implementation of policies and also sign the Disability Rights Bill into law.
The President of DWAN, Abuja chapter, Mrs. Helen Udoye, made the call in Abuja on Friday during the third edition of the Association’s Health Awareness Week with the theme “Achieving 17 SDGs Goals For the Future Want.”
The Week was to commemorate the 2016 International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
She said the inclusion of deaf women in national policies would increase awareness, advocate their plight and challenges and help in the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals.
She also called for the inclusion of members in economic growth and opportunities to participate in the job market, health services and politics.
Udoye said an estimated five million women were living with deafness in Nigeria and were making a tremendous impact on national growth.
“We are calling for free health care insurance scheme, permanent sign language interpreters in Federal Government Hospitals and 20 percent slot in job placement in Federal Government agencies.
“We want NGOs to implement programs beneficial to the deaf and we also pray the society to refrain from stigmatization against persons with disabilities.”
The organization’s Country Director, Mrs. Hauwa Shekarau, represented by the Advisor on Policy, Edosa Oviawe, urged the government and concerned individuals to help to alleviate the plight of deaf women.
Mrs. Victoria Akintaro, the Director of Rehabilitation, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, pledged the ministry’s readiness to support the women and address some of their challenges.
The Country Representative, Christian Blind Mission (CBM), Mrs. Toyin Aderemi, called for the inclusion of women and girls with disabilities in government structure, organization’s policies, strategic objectives practices, and culture.