JIS News

Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, Andrew Gallimore, has called for a paradigm shift in the way society treats persons with disabilities.
“When we talk about a change in the paradigm, we talk about the opening of every aspect of our society to allow persons with disabilities to participate fully, to be able to live the Jamaican life that an average person without disabilities can live, to enjoy all the opportunities to include meaningful employment that the average Jamaican citizen is able to live,” he stated.
Mr. Gallimore was addressing an appreciation ceremony, held on November 27 at the Mona campus, in recognition of the donors and sponsors of the University of the West Indies (UWI) and Mona Lions’ Club Centre for Students with Special Needs.
He lauded the Lions’ Club of Mona in partnership with the UWI Development & Endowment Fund, along with all the sponsors and donors, who collaborated for the development of the centre.
He noted that the state-of-the-art centre, which provides all that is needed to ensure that persons with disabilities can reach their scholastic goals, will serve as a source of inspiration for persons with disabilities. “It generates great hope for every person with a disability, not only in Jamaica but in the region at large,” he stated.
The State Minister further called for collaboration among sectors of the society to ensure that opportunities are created of the disabled.
Principal and Pro Vice Chancellor at the UWI, Professor Gordon Shirley, in his remarks, noted that the centre will significantly improve the facilities available to students with disabilities.
The centre is equipped with aids of all kinds to enable persons with disabilities such as deafness, intellectual and mobility challenges, and for the blind and the visually impaired, to operate effectively, in a learning environment.
It is equipped with devices such as embossers, talking calculators, computers with special software to assist the blind and the visually impaired. The facility will allow for student with special needs to have exam papers specially formatted for them, while providing an environment where they can take examinations.

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