GNAD calls on gov’t to address employment challenges of deaf youth

GNAD calls on gov’t to address employment challenges of deaf youth

Juventus Duorinaah the Executive Director of GNAD

The Ghana National Association of the Deaf (GNAD) has called on government to adopt initia­tives that would promote the full integration of the deaf onto the labour market.

According to GNAD, un­employment among the deaf youth was high in the country.

This was contained in a statement copied to The Spec­tator on Friday to commem­orate the International Day of Sign Languages (IDSL).

The day which is commem­orated every year on Septem­ber 23 was celebrated under the theme “a world where deaf people everywhere can sign anywhere.”

According to the state­ment, work does not only create an opportunity to earn an income, but also enables persons with disability to participate fully in the main­stream society.

“The past few decades have seen growing interest about right to work of young people including strategies to get youth with disabilities onto the labour market and reduce their vulnerability. These initiations have resulted in substantial interventions using various strategies aimed at increasing youth disabled people’s participation in the labour market,” it said.

According to the state­ment, a significant number of Ghana’s 470,737 population identified as having varied degree of hearing loss were still unable to enter the labour market and maintain sustained employment.

It mentioned that low level of educational attainment and low employable skills had disadvantaged the deaf on the labour market.

“We call on the Ministry of Gender, Children and So­cial Protection (MGCSP) and Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations (MELR) to expedite action towards the adoption of equity employ­ment policy,” it said.

It said the policy was developed by the Ghana Federation of Disability Organisation to which GNAD was a founding member and that such policy was crucial to facilitating positive dis­crimination aimed at getting more deaf youth on the labour market.

The statement said, major­ity of them had been exclud­ed in terms of government support for youth entrepre­neurship and called on gov­ernment to provide support to young entrepreneurs who are deaf and hard of hearing.

 By Jemima Esinam Kuatsinu

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