6. 4. 2010
Information on the Government Board for People with Disabilities
The Government Board for People with Disabilities was established by the Resolution of the Government of the Czech Republic no. 151 of 8 May 1991 as a standing coordination, initiative and advisory body for issues relating to the support of people with disabilities.
The Government Board for People with Disabilities deals with issues that cannot be solved individually by a single ministry. Its activities are focused on creation of equal opportunities for people with disabilities in all spheres of the life of the society, in particular in the social, and education area, in the sphere of job creation and mobility.
The Board highlights serious problems of people with disabilities, it take stands on the materials submitted to the government of the Czech Republic in case they concern disabled people. It cooperates with central bodies of the state administration and civic associations of disabled people. Disabled citizens themselves take an active part in the activities of the Board through the Czech National Disability Council (CNDC), the presidium of which consists part of the Board; the CCNDC is its main advisory body of the Board.
The Board prepares and presents to the government of the Czech Republic national plans for disabled people. The government adopted in 2004 the Medium-Term Conception of the State Policy towards People with Disabilities. Tasks and targets of the conception are bases of the current National Plan for the Support and Integration of People with Disabilities for 2006-2009 which was adopted in 2005. It contains a package of specific measures relating to the issues of disabled people with relevant deadlines for the individual ministries. The National Plan is regularly monitored and assessed by the government and it is annually updated.
The secretariat of the Board administers the National Development Programme "Mobility for All", the purpose of which is the support of the implementation of easy-access roads in towns and villages. Principal parts which are funded in the framework of the programme by the individual ministries are removing barriers in buildings of the state administration and public institutions and easy access to the means of transport.
The secretariat of the Board participates in the comment procedure of all new and amended laws and regulations from the point of view of needs and interests of disabled people.
On the international level the secretariat of the board cooperates with bodies of the European Union, the Council of Europe and the United Nations.
The preparation of the new National Plan for Equal Treatment of People with Disabilities for 2010 – 2014.
The National Plan for Equal Treatment of People with Disabilities for 2010 (in czech only), hereinafter referred to as National Plan, is submitted as a result of the Government Resolution no. 273 concerning the Report on the Concept Measures of the Medium-Term Conception of the State Policy towards People with Disabilities implemented in 2007-2008. Following the resolution the Minister for Human Rights and the acting Deputy Chairman of the Government Board for People with Disabilities were assigned with a task to work out and to submit to the government by 31 March 2010 the draft of a new National Plan for People with Disabilities for 2010-2014 which would respect tasks and targets of the Medium-Term Conception.
During the last two decades the Czech Republic has ranked among states which realize increasing responsibility for removing barriers preventing disabled people from full participation and inclusion in the society. It has been systemically striving for the gradual solution of the individual partial areas which directly concerned disabled people, with the objective to improve conditions and quality of their lives.
For this purpose four National Programmes were worked out and adopted by the government. In these programmes policies of the state towards people with disabilities were formulated together with measures for the individual ministries in accordance with their importance and priorities.
Fulfilment of the National Plans the government was assessed annually and in case of need they were amended. It is possible to state objectively that the implementation of the National Plans resulted in clear improvement of the approach of the state to the people with disabilities; this approach was documented in number of areas that were important for ensuring conditions for high quality and dignified life of that group of people and which foster their integration into the society.
An important event which influenced the preparation and the content of the National Plan submitted is the fact that the Czech Republic ratified in September 2009 the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (hereinafter referred to as "Convention"), which had been adopted in December 2006 by the United Nations General Assembly.
The Convention is the eights of the UN conventions in succession concerning human rights. It does not formulate any new rights; it just imposes a duty of a consistent assertion of the existing human rights and freedoms from the point of view of persons with disabilities. It expresses respect for their dignity and equal position, the right to independence and personal autonomy including the freedom to make one's own choice; it supports participation of disabled persons in all the policies which concern them. The Convention regards as most important the access of people with disabilities to the physical, economic, social and cultural environment, to the education, rehabilitation, information and communication.
The basic form of the National Plan corresponds to the content and structure of the Convention. For elaboration of the document were selected only those parts of the Convention which were the most topical and the most important from the point of view of creation of equal and non-discriminating environment for people with disabilities for the next five-year period.
The National Plan is divided into separate chapters that correspond to the articles of the Convention. Each chapter, apart from the quotation of the respective article of the Convention, contains brief description of the existing state and targets which are to be achieved through the measures as well as the package of measures with the specification of responsible ministries and the respective deadlines.
The most significant issues of the National Plan are in particular measures aimed at equal treatment and the ban of discrimination, education, employment, accessibility of buildings and means of transport, access to the cultural heritage and such like.
The draft of the new National Plan will be debated by the government in April 2010.