Belize Disabilities Bill 2024 Nears Introduction to House of Representatives

Belize Disabilities Bill 2024 Nears Introduction to House of Representatives

The Ministry of Human Development has concluded its consultations on the Belize Disabilities Bill 2024 and is looking to introduce the 29-page document to the House of Representatives.  The Bill seeks to strengthen the rights and the enforcement of the rights of persons living with disabilities. It also seeks to introduce a National Commission that will ensure the adherence of laws as they relate to this section of the population. Minister Dolores Balderamos-Garcia noted that there were several organizations that were consulted on this new bill.

Dolores Balderamos Garcia, Minister of Indigenous People’s Affairs: “The disabilities legislation is pretty much ready for introduction in the National Assembly, in the House of Representatives. So the bill has been drafted and we will be taking it to the House of Representatives and as I say in preparing that bill we did very broad consultations countrywide with input from Mr.Mashall Nunez who is at our disability desk. We had input from BAPDA, the Belize Association for Persons with Diverse Abilities. We had input from the Ministry of Education’s Special Education Unit and many many partners countrywide. So we’re ready with that legislation and that legislation dovetails very nicely with our focus on aging because as we age you know you might have to be in a wheelchair, you’re not as mobile and so in our parks and playgrounds, in our buildings we have to provide a ramp, for example like I say you can’t just have stairs now. You know buildings like even in this hotel I hope they have a ramp that if somebody comes in a wheelchair that person will have access to the amenities and to the facilities of the hotel or whatever building we’re at. So I’m very pleased that the disability legislation will be presented shortly.”

The National Commission of persons with Disabilities will comprise the CEOs in the Ministries of Human Development, Economic Development, Transport, Education, and Health, as well as the Attorney General.  It will also see representation from the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry; the Belize Tourism Industry Association; the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, and a representative from a civil society organization that provides services for persons with disabilities.

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