• The PWDs want the government to finalise and adopt the National Disability Policy and mandate to ensure its full and effective implementation.
• They noted that all measures should be taken with full and active participation of persons with disabilities.
Persons with Disabilities have called on the government to review its legal policy and institutional framework to ensure they are included in government jobs.
In a forum held on Thursday, the PWDs cited an analysis conducted by the Global Labour Program (GLP), which found that Kenya's legal framework does not effectively prohibit and prevent discrimination of persons with disabilities in the area of work and employment.
In this regard, the PWDs want the state to repeal and replace the Persons with Disabilities Act, of 2003, with a new law on the rights of persons with disabilities.
“We call on all branches of government to take immediate and effective measures to strengthen and improve Kenya's legal framework, to ensure that persons with disabilities can participate in work and employment and in society more broadly - on an equal basis with others,” reads the statement.
PWD Act 2003 cites that the disabled are entitled to a barrier-free and disability-friendly environment to enable them to have access to buildings, roads and other social amenities, and assistive devices and other equipment to promote their mobility.
However, in the forum, they noted that despite the commitments, Kenya's legal policy and institutional framework are not consistent with the requirements of the Convention.
The Convention requires Kenya to put in place legislation to prohibit discrimination and ensure equal enjoyment of rights by persons with disabilities.
“If Kenya is to comply with its obligations under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, give effect to the spirit of the Constitution and ensure that persons with disabilities can live free and equal in dignity and rights, then action must be taken,” reads the statement.
“The legal analysis concludes that the current framework - the Constitution, Persons with Disabilities Act 2003 and laws in the sphere of work and employment - is inadequate and ineffective to ensure that persons with disabilities can enjoy the right to work on an equal basis with others.”
In addition, the PWDs want the government to finalise and adopt the National Disability Policy and mandate to ensure its full and effective implementation.
“The Government should undertake a comprehensive review of its legal, policy and institutional framework to ensure that it is taking all necessary and appropriate measures to ensure equal participation of persons with disabilities and other groups exposed to discrimination and inequality,” reads the statement.
They noted that all measures should be taken with full and active participation of persons with disabilities and other groups exposed to discrimination, relevant communities, civil society organisations, national human rights, equality institutions, trade unions and other relevant stakeholders.
“Action to complete these steps should be taken immediately, in order to ensure that Kenya has the necessary legislative and policy framework to combat disability discrimination and advance equality of participation for persons with disabilities,” reads the statement.
“These measures are necessary but not, on their own, sufficient conditions for ensuring that persons with disabilities can enjoy their rights on an equal basis with others.”