The Deaf Women Association of Nigeria (DWAN) has urged Federal Government to carry its members along in 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 Diabilities.
She said the inclusion of deaf women in national policies would increase awareness, advocate their plight and challenges and help in the achievement of Ssustainable 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 tremendous impact in national growth.
“We are calling for free health care insurance scheme, permanent sign language interpreters in Federal Government Hospitals and 20 per cent slot in job placement in Federal Government agencies.
“We want NGO’s to implement programmes beneficial to the deaf and we also pray the society to refrain from stigmatisation against persons with disabilities.”
The organization’s Country Director , Mrs Hauwa Shekarau, represented by the Advisor on Policy, Edosa Oviawe, urged 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 inclusion of women and girls with disabilities in government structure, organisation’s policies, strategic objectives practices and culture.