Sun | Jan 20, 2019

Applauding boost to disabled

Published:Wednesday | December 6, 2017 | 12:22 AM


I refer to a story titled 'Schools being retrofitted to improve disabled access' (Gleaner, December 4, 2017) in which the Ruel Reid, the education, youth and information minister, made remarks at the Abilities Foundation's Beauty Services Unit launch on November 28.

The minister's commitment to the Disability Inclusion Act must be applauded.

Retrofitting our schools with ramps and lifts to improve access to persons with disabilities is a big step towards the inclusion initiative (equal opportunity to all). No child should feel that his/her dreams and aspirations are hindered by exclusion by a community. Likewise, no child should be denied the privilege granted by a country to access education because of his or her disability.

It is my belief that the strongest impact of inclusion starts with our children. The school environment can set the tone to educate our children on the subject of Disability and Inclusion.

Inclusion concepts will teach our children to look beyond the physical and embrace each other's unique differences and similarities.

It will help to cultivate open-mindedness and values such as empathy, kindness and patience, which are essential attributes to one's personal development and the cultivation of good stewards and citizens.

Let us all play our part in the inclusion process, by being kind, considerate, patient and helpful the next time you encounter a person with a disability.


New Kingston