Continued work on assessing the accessibility of pooling places
110th Session of the Republic Electoral Commission More...
Further assessment of pooling places
Members of local CILS More...
Accessibility of pooling places for PWDs
On recommendation of REC More...
CIL serbia continued its work on electoral More...
PA Training in December
CIL Trainers held two training for PAs More...
I N T E R V I E W
Judith Heumann is a well known American disability rights activist. Heumann was among those who pioneered modern legislation recognising that the U.S. Constitution guarantees equality of access and opportunity to persons with disabilities. She co-founded World Institute on Disability. She also served in the Clinton Administration as Assistant Secretary of the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services at the U.S. Department of Education. Further, she was appointed the World Bank’s first full-time Advisor on Disability and Development in 2002. She is now lead Consultant, Global Partnership for Disability and Development (G.P.D.D.). Heumann was in Delhi for the G.P.D.D. meet and here she shares her views and experiences with Chitra S. Shankar.
1. As a forerunner of the disability movement in the U.S., you are known for your strong belief in the philosophy ‘nothing about us without us’. How do you exercise this in your personal and professional life?
My purpose in life is to be vigilant and always try to be as strong as I can be. There are lots of challenges both as a disabled person and as a woman. Being able to maintain that vigilance necessitates having a good network of friends who are politically committed, are knowledgeable and have similar vision about the world in which we live.
It’s the way you have to live your life – trying to be vigilant and true to your beliefs. For instance, when I arrived, I found that the Ashoka Hotel had no accessible bathrooms. Now there are. I worked strongly with the Government and got it done. Little things are as important as big things. Small things that frequently concern you affect other people too. For me it is living the ideology. I feel that if you relax and let one thing go, you let other things go. It is about being inclusive and listening to people sharing diverse experiences. People need to be empowered and each individual needs to feel that they can benefit from this.
2. How do you view the American disability movement today as compared to the 60s?
The movement has grown. It was started with a small group of people with a fighting spirit trying to fight major problems – mainly on discrimination and adverse effects. In the late 60s and 70s, as the movement was developing and emerging, we were a group of desperate people with different backgrounds coming together, which was a problem. We did not know each other. But over the years, we are developing people who are knowledgeable, telling them how to work in various areas such as education, transport, etc.
We in the U.S. change with development organisations, etc., and some of the laws have very powerful effect – especially Access laws. We continue to face challenges. Some of the court decisions have been bad. There is need for participating continuously in legislations to ensure that we maintain and strengthen our position within governments and there is the issue of financing, and the issue of whether people are losing benefits. But we have to be strategic because there are more conservative courts. Disabled people find it difficult to find jobs. Discrimination is part of it. People find problems getting support on their jobs. Employment is a major issue because education is getting better. Disabled children are in schools but not all are integrated and there is a high rate of dropouts.
The movement is continuing to grow but majority of the disabled people are not part of it. Disability is so varied and many people acquire disability late in life. So it is not a single group. But you have to find ways of finding people including those with invisible disabilities.
3. Do you think that there are more tools and techniques available now as compared to the 60s?
The issue of working cross-disability for most things is a powerful tool. As a cross-disability movement, we achieved more changes in legislation than when we came in groups. As people are educated and have more knowledge we are able to effectively negotiate better. People are in a position of authority and can make policy and implement it. More disabled people are being elected to government positions. Disabled people are seen more on the streets than before, because infrastructure is more accessible and they are becoming part of the mainstream than before. In schools they are meeting peers. So we need to focus on youth so they do not get isolated. Parents and disabled people are getting more involved together.
4. What role does the U.S. play in the international disability rights movement?
It is very unfortunate that the U.S. plays a limited role in the international arena. Maybe because the country is so large and people are less knowledgeable and engaged in international issues. It is something some of us are working on. And it is slowly changing.
5. As a champion of rights for disabled people, you have done a lot over the years. What are the contributions you feel have had the maximum impact?
From the first lawsuit I filed when denied a job to any work on legislation, it is not the issue of the individual act but the collective effort. People see in me the willingness to fight for what I believe in. The fact that I am a fighter is important.
My vision is also to work with civil society to try and bring about greater knowledge and understanding and collaboration.
6. What is the role of multilateral agencies like the World Bank in the area of disability?
They are struggling. They are also trying. The World Bank is trying and they are now doing good work, but others are resisting it. In all agencies, if you can sit and talk to someone in policy, in an analytical way, we can easily break bread. When even mainstream people are not going to schools, why would many of these institutions look at the disabled. There is a need for disabled people in all these institutions working on policy.
Some of the positive things like G.P.D.D. is that it is a promising activity because it is bringing together a broad group of entities working on disability, looking at it from the human rights and equal rights perspective and not the medical model.
7. What brings you to India?
The Global Partnership for Disability and Development (G.P.D.D.) meet.
8. What is the significance of G.P.D.D. vis-à-vis the disabled population and how does it impact at the international level?
The G.P.D.D. is trying to bring together diverse groups, to talk about inclusive development and to learn how to work together. A large number of individuals are doing lots of work in the area of disability. They are slowly integrating development with their work.
9. You have been in India for a few days now. What has been your experience?
I could not get out of the hotel because there are no curb cuts on the streets. There is no accessible transportation. In 2003, I was in India. I do not see a lot of change.
10. The U.N. Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities was adopted on 25 August 2006. What is your opinion and when do you think it will be ratified?
It is monumental. It is one of the biggest achievements internationally, with a good document created with disabled people’s voices heard. It will be ratified. Maybe in a year. The issue is to get governments to do what needs to be done.
ENIL calls for an end to Death by Social Indifference
Four more countries ratify CRPD
Disability Awareness in Action Newsletter
SEMINAR IN NIKSIC, MONTENEGRO
CIL in Belgrade too
We have our lives back
JOBS FOR ALL
MD persons continue hunger strike
Call for 140 financial support for 140 students with disability
Council of Europe calls for deinstitutionalisation of children with disabilities
NOTHING ABOUT US WITHOUT US: THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DRIVES FORWARD DISABILITY RIGHTS
“Incredible stories of invisible lives” exhibition in Uzice
Draft of Law on Social Protection
30 years United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women
Opening Conference of the European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion,
The sky's the limit for disabled athletes in Serbia
CRPD Ratifications reach 76
Round table "Development the advocacy capacities of organisations of persons with disability in Serbia"
With Parthership Towards Development
FREE OUR PEOPLE NOW!
COMMEMORATING THE INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE ELIMINATION OF VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
Center for Disease Control and Prevention, USA
Persons with disability in politic life everywhere
ENIL has 777 members in Facebook
Disability and policy
„Love and Kindness“ Fund
Women with disability
„A Midnight Summer Dream“
Court Cases filed in the Name of Persons with Disability
Freedom Drive 2009 - Demands
INFORMATION FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES ABOUT H1N1 VIRUS
My world has changed – two stories in one
European Citizen Award
Not just a pretty Facebook
First deaf Member of Parliament is sworn in
Letter to Prime Minister Cvetkovic
PA Service in Leskovac too
International Day of Persons with Disabilities - 3 December 2009
New TV broadcast
Malta: MOTE - My Opinion My Vote
Access to persons with disability
„CLOSER TOGETHER“ PROJECT
SERBIA RATIFIED UN CONVENTION
Court case dealing with UN COnvention in Germany
WHY SHOULD EUROPE INCREASE THE MATERNITY LEAVE?
Learning disability genes found
Poland: Disabled People Excluded from EU Elections
International Autism Day
Coucil for persons with disability
My right to be healthy
International Day of Rare Diseases
PERSONAL ASSISTANCE BILLS
Disability Equality: Promoting Positive Attitudes
SERVICE IN JAGODINA
White House launched a new website today and disability issues are highlighted under the Agenda heading
Conference on Cooperation for Improvement of Disability Policy in Serbia
Workshhop on CRPD
First Committee of Experts on Disability Rights Convention Elected
GREAT SUPPORT TO ANTONIJEVIC FAMILY
Parking for everyone
Electoral rights for PWDs in Albania
The ways of integration
Finding a College That Suits Students “With Special Needs”
Another silver medal for Serbia
The Annual march for Disabled Visibility in Madrid
Good Practise/Bad Practice
UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)
Free our People!
All... but not retard.
European Day of Disabled People 2008
Parents' fury at 'Down's Syndrome dolls'
Eurobarometer on discrimination
Less sex, less fun
Coming Soon, a Braille Silver Dollar
Roads to integration
Disability proves no barrier to Olympic inclusion
Media and Disability
Media and disability
Are there any changes in preparations for Paraolympics?
U.N Issues Stamps to Commemorate Disability Treaty
Beijing 'sorry' for offending disabled
Government unveils new package for disabled children
China Sets Gold Standard in Offending Disabled
Way to Independence
Wishes could come true
Seminar on reforms of social protection system
National Conference on Gender Equality
Mobility International Seeks Young Adults
Wal-Mart settles with applicant with disability [USA]
First Contestant with a Disability to Compete for Miss USA Title
INFO - CENTER
INACCESSIBILITY IS DISCRIMINATION!
UN Convention on PWDs rights
Conference on National strategy for Youth
Bits and pieces from Slovenija
Meeting with Bozidar Djelic
Focus group “Social services for PWDs“
SHARE SEE Grantee Training
Make a date
It's Okay to Stare... Then Engage a Question!
Sombor hosted workshop "sex, gender, disability"
Dancing Beyond Disability
Seminar HUMAN BEING AND ITS ENVIRONMENT
Project From Alternative to Standardisation
The regional group of experts in social service provision for people with disabilities
Youth Regional conference
Are we going to Europe?
Disability Guide to Disneyland Paris
POI Conference "From cause to the result: New approaches towards disability"
Open Letter to the Government, Members of National Assembly Competent Institutions and Policy Makers
Centre plan for disabled actors
An Autistic Dream
MEETING ON DISABILITY ISSUES IN SERBIA
A PARAGIDM SHIFT FROM 'CHARITY' TO 'RIGHTS AND DIGNITY'
New Visa rules
Disabled rights champion honoured
Map of the World
Serbia is going to sign UN CRPD
WORKSHOP IN CAIRO
Seminar on Women with Disabilities
Adaptation of living environment for Persons with Disabilities
Program „Contact Organisations from the Civil Society”
Community Living for Disabled People Must Be Made a Priority
Celebrating 3rd December
Celebrating the 3rd December 2007
FILM FESTIVAL OBSERVING 3 DECEMBER
National Umbrella Organisation mark 3rd of December
ENDING OF SHARE SEE TRAINING PROGRAM
SHARE SEE IV MODULE – NISKA BANJA
IMPORTANT DAYS TO CELEBRATE
To Ministry of Labor and Social Policy
SHARE SEE training in Predejane
Recognising the Rights of Girls and Women with Disabilities
SHARE SEE IV MODULE IN SMEDEREVO
Creation the Local Plans of Actions in Disability Area
SHARE SEE IV MODULE – BELGRADE
TODAY IS THE DAY OF UN
Goodbye mouse hello voice controls
INTERNATIONAL DAY OF POVERTY REDUCTION
ADA RESTORATION ACTION CENTER
WHERE IS SERBIA
Disability Rights Treaty on Verge of Making History?
The Days of European Heritage in Belgrade, 20-30 of September
Council of Europe in Zagreb
Virtual interpreter turns speech into sign language
Strasbourg Freedom Drive
Jagodina hosted the Third Table tennis tournament "Jagodina Trophy"
Hungary ratified UN Convention
Convention on Child Protection
UN convention on disability rights reaches milestone in signatories
IIIrd INTERNATIONAL SMILING CHILD FESTIVAL
Your dressing room on the Internet
Chosen home life a basic right for disabled people
What Can They Do?
III Module of trainings accomplished
SHARE SEE trainings
Project with young activists finished
Special EUROBAROMETER 263 “Discrimination in the European Union”
Seminar on Independent Living in Macedonia
It's Deaf Awareness Week 7-13 May
International Day of Families (15 May)
Social services in South East Europe
Test on Autism
UN Headquarters, New York, NY
Presentation the UN Convention in Belgrade
Presentation of UN Convention on rights of persons with disabilities in Jagodina
SHARE SEE training in Belgrade
SHARE SEE training for Leskovac cluster
SHARE SEE Module II in Nis
The U.S. Embassy has a pleasure to invite you
SHARE SEE trainings Module II
I N T E R V I E W
UN Study of Violence Against Women Finds 50% of Disabled Women Experience Abuse
Launch of the Year of Equal Opportunities
Survey reveals social attitudes to disability
Homes that Meet Life’s Changing Needs
Awards for the best Campaign, PAs and users within the PASS project
Design for Everyone, Disabled or Not
EDUCATION FOR MEMBERS OF POLITICAL PARTIES IN NOVI SAD ON BASIC FACTS ON DISABILITY ISSUES!
UN Convention adopted
Tribune on UN Convention in Novi Sad
Round table in Sarajevo
Evropean Union and Persons with Disabilities
Promotion of International Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities
PASS presentation in Bosnia and Herzegovina
International Day of Disabled Persons
World Congress on Disability
N. Korea puts disabled in camps
European Conference in St Petersburg
UN reward to Poland
SHARE SEE Training in Belgrade
Antidiscriminatory practice in Norway
SHARE SEE Training in Leskovac