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Legal, financial and administrative basis of the system of support for persons with disabilities

Georgia is currently at a stage of systemic and political changes. Reforms have been undertaken in social policy. Particular attention has been focused on groups exposed to exclusion. One of the most marginalised social groups in Georgia is people with disabilities. This is due to negative stereotypes, environmental barriers and the difficult financial situation as well as to inadequate legislation and inadequate mechanisms for implementing legislation that does exist. Polish-Georgian cooperation should change this situation.

Legal, financial and administrative basis of the system of support for persons with disabilities

In 2015, the fourth edition of “The legal, financial and administrative basis of the system of support for persons with disabilities” project was held. Since 2012, actions have been carried out by the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy in cooperation with Georgia’s Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs in response to the needs of the Georgian side.

During visit of the Polish delegation to Georgia in 2014, the hosts requested that a training visit be organised to Poland, devoted to increasing social awareness on problems of people with disabilities in connection with Article 8 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

The overall project objective was to improve the situation for people with disabilities in Georgia. The immediate objectives were sharing knowledge and good practices as well as legislative solutions with central and local Georgian government officials and NGOs in the following areas:

  • raising public awareness in matters related to disability;
  • removal of architectural barriers;
  • accessibility and universal design;
  • therapy methods for children and adults with different types of disabilities;
  • support systems for children and adults with autism.

Furthermore, cooperation was developed among entities working for persons with disabilities in Georgia and bilateral cooperation was initiated between Georgian and Polish organisations. The project was primarily addressed to the central government administration and secondarily to local governments and NGOs.

Legal, financial and administrative basis of the system of support for persons with disabilities

During the visit to Poland in June 2015, representatives of Georgia’s parliament, government administration, public media and the Ombudsman learned about developing positive attitudes toward people with disabilities in the media through public campaigns.

Representatives of three Georgian NGOs completed an internship at the Milicz Association of Friends of Children and People with Disabilities, during which they learned about therapies for people with various types of disabilities. During this time, they also became familiar with the operation of the centre, which conducts activities addressed to children (including early diagnosis) as well as adults (e.g. training flats).

During a visit to Poland in June 2015, five people, including a representative of the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs, two representatives of the town hall in Tbilisi and two representatives of academic centres learned about systems of support for people with autism (diagnosis, education, social and occupational rehabilitation).