Xingwana: Employ people with disabilities
Bloemfontein - The failure by both the public and private sector to achieve the 2% target set for the employment of people with disabilities is an indictment to our commitment to give life to the Constitution.
The Minister of Women, Children and People with Disabilities, Lulu Xingwana, made this statement in Bloemfontein during the International Day of People with Disabilities.
She said that no amount of excuses could explain away the failure by both government and industry to achieve the 2% target.
Xingwana challenged among others all ministers, premiers, MECs and CEOs of state owned enterprises and industry to stop hiding behind excuses and to take concrete steps to exceed the 2% target within their institutions by December 3 2012.
“For as long as we have so many graduates and matriculants with disabilities who remain unemployed, dependent on handouts and at the mercy of their communities and families, we cannot use the excuse that there are insufficient numbers of disabled job-seekers with the required skills and qualifications.
“I similarly challenge every disabled job-seeker to register as job-seekers with the department of labour as well as employment agencies”.
She added: “It is simply unacceptable that, despite the adoption of very progressive legislation and policies, we are not succeeding in significantly improving on the number of learners with disabilities leaving school with skills that will provide them with occupations; provide them with sustainable livelihoods and lift them out of poverty”.
Xingwana noted that there was a strong link between disability and poverty.
“People with disabilities will, as a group, remain largely unemployed unless we ensure that they have access to quality intervention and rehabilitation services as soon as impairment is identified.”