The International Community of Women Living with HIV, West Africa (ICW-WA) has tasked governments in the region as well as policy makers and duty bearers with a review and update of the law and anti-discrimination and patient rights laws.
They also called on the government to prioritize the integration of underserved populations (ISPs) such as people with disabilities (PDs) into society.
The call was contained in a statement signed by ICW-WA Regional Director Ms. Assumpta Reginald yesterday in Abuja during a national dialogue meeting with stakeholders from Senegal, Sierra Leone and Nigeria.
The communiqué highlighted the need for active supportive policies for the inclusion and meaningful engagement of women, youth, persons with disabilities and other citizens with special needs in all decision-making, planning and of implementation.
He also stressed the need to establish policies and train health care providers who will prioritize their particular needs in existing health services.
The dialogue said it was paramount for the federal government to enable accessibility for people with disabilities, urging Nigeria to emulate other West African countries with a deliberate and intentional strategy for the inclusion of people with disabilities. People with Disabilities.
He also stressed the need to sensitize and interact with religious and community leaders and also to mobilize the media to be involved in all activities.
He added that the media has a central role to play in the fight against AIDS because it is often said that education is the vaccine against HIV.
He highlighted the need for sign language interpreters on television for the hearing impaired, accessible buildings and parking lots at government agencies, banks and shopping malls, among others, saying people with disabilities deserved a more dignified life. than the status of beggar that society imposes on them.
He lamented that there are no sign language interpreters on national television in Nigeria like you see in other African countries.
He said having this is inclusive because everyone will be well informed.
The statement said that offices, banks and shopping malls should be accessible to people with disabilities as they are also part of society.
He further noted that people should not assume that people with disabilities are beggars but rather that they should advocate for an enabling and inclusive environment for them otherwise Nigeria would be left behind in growth.