CEOSS hosted the second meeting of Arab Disability Movement, entitled ” Arab Disability Movement … partnership, capacity building and monitoring mechanisms” with the participation of delegations representing 13 Arab countries, and in collaboration with Diakonia, the International Organization for People with Disabilities, and Lebanese Physical Handicapped Union. The meeting was attended by Shoaib Shaklin, Disabilities representative at United Nations , Javed Abidi , Head of International Organization for People with Disabilities, Silvana Lakkis , chairman of LPHU , Hossam El Massah Secretary General of the National Council on Disability, and Ghada Hammam, Diakonia Head of programs in Egypt.
Rev. Dr. Andrea Zaki, CEOSS General Director, said that the meeting aims to exchange experiences and to discuss the steps of forming alliances and national federations of Member States and to develop an action plan for the coming period in the context of a number of themes, including the mechanisms of the Arab partnerships, empowerment and capacity building, monitoring and follow-up mechanisms for the rights of persons with disabilities. He also stressed that we must all admit that the issues of disability and attention to the disabled in many Arab countries are greatly neglected and no special laws are there to protect and help them, while in European countries the disabled receive great attention and full care.
He continued that: “Egypt pays a special attention to the disabled, as the new constitution guarantees the rights of disabled people and to provide them with employment opportunities appropriate for their capabilities and their number, which exceeded 12 million disabled Egyptian.” He also praised the efforts of Dr. Hossam El Massah, Representative of the disabled in the Constitutional Committee, for his significant role during the preparation of the new Constitution. He also highlighted the Children’s Act No. 12 of 1996 , that includes a special chapter on child Care of children with disabilities, their rehabilitation, and the role of the government and civil society organizations in the provision of educational services for children with disabilities.