Raising Awareness among Key Stakeholders
1. Organize courtyard meetings to introduce DPO members to the law
The Persons with Disabilities Rights and Protection Act, 2013 (DRPA) is challenging for many persons with disabilities to understand. It is a big change from Bangladesh’s 2001 law for persons with disabilities. The DRPA recognizes 20 new rights for persons with disabilities and prohibits discrimination based on disability. The DRPA also establishes a new procedure for persons with disabilities to get remedies for violations of these rights or forms of disability-based discrimination. What people’s rights are, where they can seek remedies, and how they can make complaints are new concepts for many persons with disabilities and may require time to understand.
Courtyard meetings are community meetings held close to people’s homes that are less formal and shorter than trainings. They are also less expensive and easier to organize. They can also help DPOs reach harder-to-reach persons with disabilities who live in rural areas. At courtyard meetings, DPOs can introduce persons with disabilities and their family members to the law. DPOs can get members of their communities excited to learn more about the law. Although it is not possible to give most persons with disabilities a deep understanding of the law within a few hours, the informal structure of courtyard meetings can also build trust between DPO leaders and persons with disabilities in their communities.
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This domain was previously home to a joint report by NGDO, NCDW, and BLAST entitled “Current Status of Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Bangladesh: Legal and Grassroots Perspectives 2015,” produced with funding from the Disability Rights Fund. It is now available here.