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Volume 4 Issue 14 - July 15, 2006

Memorandum known as Delhi Declaration submitted to P.M.

D.N.I.S. News Network - A two-day ‘National Consultation on N.R.E.G.S. & Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities’ was recently organised by Leonard Cheshire International (L.C.I.), Handicap International, Poorest Areas Civil Society Programme and Department for International Development (D.F.I.D.), in New Delhi. At the end of the Consultation, the house resolved to submit a Memorandum known as Delhi Declaration to the Prime Minister of India for perusal and positive action. The following is the text.

Memorandum

National consultation on N.R.E.G. and inclusion of persons with Disabilities

13-14th June, 2006

Organized at: Vishwa Yuva Kendra, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi

Hereby we unanimously adopt the resolution, to submit a memorandum to authorities concerned in order to facilitate and ensure process of meaningful and effective inclusion of persons with disabilities in the programme at all levels and spheres with following specific and concrete measures:

1. Appropriate and clear cut instructions and guidelines against all forms of discrimination, in relation to persons with disabilities should be issued by competent authority in Govt. so as to ensure that Persons with Disabilities are able to access, use and enjoy the benefits under the N.R.E.G. act on an equal basis with others. These safeguards, inter alia, should cover areas such as – Registration, Issue of Job Cards, Work Allotment, Equal Wages, Payments, etc.

2. Not withstanding anything contained in the above statement, the Competent Authority shall make positive discrimination in relation to persons with disabilities wherever required.

3. Communication Material should be made accessible to Persons with Disabilities in terms of Format and Mode.

4. The information about this programme should reach persons with disabilities as well as the implementing machinery at grass root levels emphasizing inclusion of persons with disabilities.

5. Preference should be given to Persons with disabilities in the recruitment of jobs at admin and supervisory roles at District, Block and Panchayat level in accordance with the provisions of Persons with disabilities Act 1995. E.g. Rozgar Sevak , Site Supervisors, Programme Officer etc. ( the list is indicative only)

6. To ensure inclusion of Persons With Disabilities, each adult with disability should be considered as a separate household regardless of whether s/he has a family or not. [As per the Administrative Reforms Commission-A.R.C. recommendations]

7. Job Card should include information on disability status and category.

8. Organisations of Persons with Disabilities as well as organisations working on the issue of Disability should be consulted for identification and recommendation of Work.

9. A minimum of not less than 3% of the resources at all levels shall be allocated for works specifically benefiting Persons with Disabilities as required under Sec. 40 of Persons with Disabilities Act 1995.

10. Considering the difficulties involved in developing a universally applicable SSR for all Persons with Disabilities, it is recommended that Time Based Wages – and not Task Based Wages - be provided to all Persons with Disabilities as specified in I.L.O. convention.

11. Disability segregated information, both on the records as well as virtual, should be mandatory in all monitoring reports of work generated under the N.R.E.G.A.

12. Preference should be given to Persons with Disabilities especially Women with Disabilities in allocation of jobs.

13. Crčche supervisor post should preferably go to Women with Disabilities. E.g. Karnataka has made such provisions.

14. Particular care should be taken to emphasise the need for universal and inclusive design of assets and infrastructure to be created under N.R.E.G. Programme.

15. Appropriate Areas of Work and Tasks should be designed and assigned to the persons with disabilities, keeping in mind the abilities, qualification, degree / category / nature of disability.

16. Appropriate projects should be designed in consultation with organisations for and of persons with disabilities.

17. Work should be assigned to Persons with Disabilities as close to their residence as possible. In case of work provided beyond 5 kilometres, appropriate transport facilities should be provided to Persons with Disabilities.

18. Ensure accessible toilet facilities for workers in general, and Women and Men with Disabilities in particular at the work place.

19. Social Audit, Vigilance committee, Central and state data to include information about Persons with disabilities s also.

20. Appropriate and adequate representation of Persons with Disabilities should be ensured in all planning, designing, implementing, monitoring and evaluation bodies at all levels, including National and State Employment Guarantee Councils (S.E.G.C.s).

21. Appropriate amendments should be made to N.R.E.G.A. 2005 with explicit expression of disability to ensure complete and meaningful inclusion of Persons with Disabilities to effectively access this programme.

National Consultation with its all participants and members unanimously urge the Government of India in general and appropriate authorities in particular, to take timely and appropriate measures and act on this resolution which is known as “Delhi Declaration on N.R.E.G. and Inclusion”.

With Warm regards

Action Aid, Bangalore.

Leonard Cheshire International, Bangalore.

Handicap International, New Delhi.

P.A.C.S., Development Alternatives, New Delhi.

D.F.I.D., New Delhi.

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