Commonwealth will work with the Division to improve data collection when trying to create strategies and solutions to protect the rights of people with disabilities. (Seychelles Nation)
The Human Rights Unit of the Commonwealth said that the Elderly and Disabled Division is doing a fantastic job in relation to persons living with disabilities in Seychelles.
The statement was made on Friday by the head of the Human Rights Unit, Shavana Haythornthwaite, in a press conference after a one-week working visit.
During the visit, capacity-building workshops were held with the staff of the Elderly and Disabled Division to improve the work being done with the disabled community.
The Commonwealth is working with Seychelles to help the Division with the Seychelles National Framework for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. One of the main activities will be to work on laws and policies, to strengthen the legislative framework with regards to disabilities.
“We have also found that there are key areas such as awareness raising, where we want more work with the media and more work in trying to break stigma within the society because it’s clear there is still that small level of discrimination left in Seychelles,” said Haythornthwaite.
|The head of the Human Rights Unit, Shavana Haythornthwaite (1st left) with others talking to the press on Friday. (Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY|
She added that data collection was also something that came up during their time in Seychelles and they will work with the Division to improve data collection when trying to create strategies and solutions to protect the rights of people with disabilities.
“There is a lack of data, as well as effective data collection methodology, while there is also tension between data collection and privacy, which is where the law needs to be strengthened in that area,” added Haythornthwaite.
She said that the Elderly and Disabled Division has the drive to work with other government departments and hopes they get the support necessary.
A number of recommendations were proposed as part of the National Framework in 2022, which includes having the proper legislation to help the Division do its work.
“We will be discussing legislation with the Attorney General’s Office, as at the moment we do not have a law that domesticates the Convention, that will help us do our work,” said Rosa Morin, the director general of the Division.
She said Seychelles ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons Living with Disabilities in 2009.
Other recommendations made in the national framework, include the allocation of disabled parking spaces, outreach to persons with disabilities and the respective organisations, as well as including persons with disabilities in all processes, including policy design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation.