Public Defender’s Proposal on Provision of Rehabilitation Services for Persons with Disabilities
On August 18, 2017, the Public Defender of Georgia addressed the Government of Georgia with a proposal to provide rehabilitation/habilitation services for adults with disabilities.
The Public Defender has studied the situation and challenges in terms of realization of the right of adults with disabilities to rehabilitation and habilitation, as a result of which, it was proved that services offered by the rehabilitation centers in Georgia are not available for this target group. Separate components of the state social programs only fragmentally serve the purpose of promoting social rehabilitation of persons with disabilities; it does not provide adequate specialized services for the persons with all relevant needs, while the majority of persons with disabilities cannot afford to pay for the possibility such services. Lack of rehabilitation measures leads to worsening of the health of persons with disabilities and violation of their rights. In addition, a significant challenge is the lack of qualified medical and other personnel, which makes it difficult to get quality service.
Rehabilitation of persons with disabilities is the key condition to protect their rights to health, education, employment, participation in social life and the right to live independently.
Under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Georgia undertook a commitment to create, enhance and expand habilitation and rehabilitation services and programs in the areas of health care, employment, education and social services in such a way that the services be provided at an early stage, be available geographically as close as possible and encourage participation of persons with disabilities in all spheres of life.
The Public Defender addressed the Government of Georgia with a proposal to:
- Ensure elaboration and launch of specialized habilitation/rehabilitation sub-program for adults with disabilities within the framework of the state social rehabilitation program
- The above-mentioned sub-program to offer adults with disabilities all the necessary services that will enhance their physical health, adaptive capabilities and social integration
- Adults with all types of disabilities to have access to the specialized habilitation/rehabilitation services
- Support creation and strengthening of rehabilitation centers by taking into account the principle of geographical accessibility
Ensure financing and organization of research of needs and training of specialists in the area of implementation of preventive measures suitable for medical, professional and social rehabilitation.