President urges int’l community to help PWDs through assistive technology

President urges int’l community to help PWDs through assistive technology


APP

ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi, on Friday, said that the development partners and international community must look into the needs of one billion people with disabilities (PWDs) across the world who had been neglected and were in need of technological assistance.
He stressed upon the international community to make collective efforts to bring ease to the lives of persons with disabilities (PWDs) through the use of assistive technology. The president made these remarks while virtually addressing the global community at an event titled “Mobilizing on Assistive Technology towards the second Global Disability Summit,” organized by ATscale, the global partnership for Assistive Technology (AT) in collaboration with World Health Organization (WHO). The virtual address of the President was facilitated by WHO Pakistan. The aim of the event was to advocate the importance of increasing access to Assistive Technology on the global agenda. Addressing the participants, the President observed that 90 per cent of people among the PWDs did not have access to assistive technology and the welfare of PWDs and improving their access to AT was an issue that was very close to his heart. He added that he, along with Begum Samina Arif Alvi, had been working to create awareness about the rights and issues of persons with disabilities. He observed that 90 per cent of people among the PWDs did not have access to assistive technology and the world required a policy and affirmative action to improve upon. “They are neglected and sometimes, require simple things like glasses,” he said sharing that with simple assistive technology, PWDs could be assisted. “Pakistan has been in the forefront in these global efforts to bring this issue to the attention of the world community,” he added. He said Pakistan had signed the Convention on the Rights of the People with Disabilities about 15 years ago and it had been the main instrument in bringing the agenda to the WHO executive board as well as the UN General Assembly where in the future, there would be comprehensive discussions.