Using the Section 36 Procedure
22. Install a Section 36 application deposit box
The Persons with Disabilities Rights and Protection Act, 2013 (DRPA) allows persons with disabilities whose rights are violated or who face disability-based discrimination to file complaints with their district’s DRPA committee. But neither the DRPA nor its Rules describe where those Section 36 applications should be filed. Although DPOs might successfully identify whether persons with disabilities should submit their applications with Deputy Commissioner and/or Deputy Director of the District Social Services Office, it may be unclear with whom they should deposit their application. Prospective applicants who travel to a district government office to submit their documents may face difficulties if government employees are unaware of the Section 36 procedure.
The experience of USAID’s EPD program is that DPOs can build their own wooden boxes for submitting Section 36 applications and advocate to hang them prominently outside of the relevant government office. It is important that DPOs remind persons with disabilities they should ask for a receipt that mentions the date and officer with whom the application was filed. Still, a dedicated Section 36 application deposit box sends a strong signal to persons with disabilities that their complaints will be heard and also reminds government officials and others visiting public offices that persons with disabilities are entitled to present these applications.
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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.