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JIS News

The Jamaica Council for Persons with Disabilities will be celebrating Disability Awareness Week from December 3 to 9, under the theme: ‘Accessibility to Information Technology’.
Speaking with JIS News, Executive Director of the Jamaica Council for Persons with Disabilities, Ransford Wright, said that this year’s theme was chosen in order to highlight the need for information technology to be made more accessible to persons with disabilities.
The week’s activities, he noted, would begin with a National Church Service at the Port Maria Parish Church in St. Mary on Sunday, December 3, which is designated as International Day for Persons with Disabilities.
On Wednesday, December 6, the Council will be hosting a seminar in Highgate, St. Mary on the National Policy for Persons with Disabilities.
According to Mr. Wright, the seminar would also focus on challenges that persons with disabilities in the parish were facing. The keynote speaker is expected to be Valerie Spence, Administrator at the Jamaica Council for Persons with Disabilities.
Wednesday’s activities will culminate with an award ceremony to recognize persons who have worked assiduously with the disabled and agencies representing them. A total of 10 persons will be awarded from the parish of St. Mary, St. Ann and Portland. The ceremony will be held at the Casamaria Hotel in St. Mary, beginning at 1:00 p.m.
On Friday, December 8, the Council will be having a Health Fair and Domino Competition at Hanover Street in Kingston starting at 10:00 a.m. Blue Cross, Jamaica Cancer Society, and Jamaica Aids Support will be participating in the day’s activities.
Disabilities Awareness Week started in 1981 when the United Nations declared that year, the International Year of the Disabled. It was after this that the Jamaica Council for the Disabled decided to set aside the first week of December to highlight the disabled in the society.
According to Mr. Wright, Jamaica has some 110,000 individuals living with mild or severe cases of disability.