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COMMENT | Empower the disabled with decent jobs

COMMENT | Access to decent work for persons with disabilities remains one of the top recurring challenges in Malaysia. The Covid-19 pandemic pushes us to rethink and reformulate the local agenda and ecosystem for employment.

This includes telework, digitalisation of the workplace and the aggressive promotion of e-commerce.

However, many of these strategies and working options have been advocated by persons with disabilities and their organisations around the world for a long time.

Unfortunately, with the Covid-19 vaccination efforts in progress, it seems that many of the progressive steps in the labour sector, especially the work-from-home option, are viewed as measures only during an emergency, thus things are gradually reverting to the old, disabling status quo.

Although we commend government initiatives concerning the opportunity of persons with disabilities to have gainful employment since the late 1980s such as the policy on the one percent quota for job placement for persons with disabilities in the public sector, the tax incentive for the private sector and the continuous job fairs, we have yet to achieve the aspired substantial change.

It is reported that only 0.35 percent of employees in the civil service are persons with disabilities, thus highlighting the lack of success of the one percent quota policy....  

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