Thursday, March 6, 2008

Fighting misperceptions about disabled people in society and in the labor market | key component of employability programs

The active participation of NGOs in promotion campaigns that help society and the labor market change their perceptions about what disabled people can accomplish, may seem as a small step forward towards reaching employability goals, but it is actually a very important one. Similar to what we learned in Poland, for a long time disabled people were not given the same educational and work opportunities because of the misconception of what they can achieve as citizens and in their professional life.

Changing these misconceptions is crucial for opening the much needed doors to the labor market. Through campaigns, awareness workshops, and active participation in policy discussions organizations like Apeirons create a more welcoming and enabling environment for disabled people in the job market. In Latvia there is a wide spread problem of people drinking and driving and becoming disabled because of car crash accidents. The problem is endemic and wide spread and through prevention campaigns organization not only fight prejudice against disabled people but also help prevent one of the main causes for people becoming disabled. I can't underscore enough the importance of comprehensive approaches at all levels. No contribution is small!

These are some of the posters for an awareness campaign that Apeirons organized together with Art Students here in Riga:

Mobility and Independence for Disabled People

Drink, Drive, and Join the Club

More pictures of the poster exhibition are in my flickr

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