Please provide information on the legislative and policy framework in place in your country related to the status, establishment, resourcing, and functioning of representative organizations of persons with disabilities at the national



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رئاسة مجلس الوزراء

المجلس القومى لشئون الإعاقة

مكتب الأمين العام





Egypt's Responses to the Questionnaire on the right of persons with disabilities to participation in decision making

BY:

National Council for Disability Affairs

EGYPT

  1. Please provide information on the legislative and policy framework in place in your country related to the status, establishment, resourcing, and functioning of representative organizations of persons with disabilities at the national, regional and local levels.

With Regard to the legislative and policy framework in place in Egypt related to the status, establishment, resourcing, and functioning of representative organizations of persons with disabilities, Article No.75 of the 2014 Egyptian constitution states that:


"All citizens shall have the right to form non-governmental associations and foundations on democratic basis, which shall acquire legal personality upon notification. Such associations and foundations shall have the right to practice their activities freely, and administrative agencies may not interfere in their affairs or dissolve them, or dissolve their boards of directors or boards of trustees save by a court judgment."
Organizations of persons with disabilities in Egypt, like the rest of civil society organizations, are subject to Law No. 84 of 2002 on the establishment of associations and organizations. The concept of organizations of persons with disabilities appeared and the approach to its composition began after UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities came to light in December 2006. Since Egypt's ratification of the Convention in April 2008, no modifications have been made to the database of associations at the Ministry of Social Solidarity to include this category, and thus there is no official statistics of their numbers.
The founders of associations determine the geographical scope of the association, the purposes, and the fields of its work according to the rules and procedures prescribed by law and regulations.
Concerning the allocation of resources, resource allocation shall be either by self-funding especially for the first three years after establishment or associations can get funding for projects from donors after the acceptance of the donor to the project proposal submitted, and after the approval of the administrative body.
Ministry of Social Solidarity provides an establishment grant for a few numbers of associations, funds projects that are part of the ministry's plan and assign them to associations, but mostly the matter casts on the founders, and it should be noted that organizations of persons with disabilities in Egypt in general need capacity building and institutional development.


  1. Please provide information on existing legislation and policies aimed at ensuring that persons with disabilities and their representative organizations, including children with disabilities, are consulted and involved in decision making processes that directly or indirectly concern them.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which was ratified by Egypt in 2008, comes to the fore as an international agreement that has the force of law, and which aims at ensuring that persons with disabilities and their representative organizations, including children with disabilities, are consulted and involved in decision making processes.

At the local level, there are no binding policies, laws or legislation on the inclusion of persons with disabilities in decision-making processes except for Article No. (244) of the Constitution of 2014 stating that:

"The State shall endeavor that youth, Christians, persons with disability and Egyptians living abroad be appropriately represented in the first House of Representatives to be elected after this Constitution is approved, as regulated by law."
And Article No. (180), which states:
"Every local unit shall elect a local council by direct and secret ballot for a term of four years. A candidate shall be at lease twenty one (21) Gregorian years of age. The law shall regulate the other conditions for candidacy and procedures of election, provided that one quarter of the seats shall be allocated to youth under thirty five (35) years of age and one quarter shall be allocated for women, and that workers and farmers shall be represented by no less than 50 percent of the total number of seats, and these percentages shall include an appropriate representation of Christians and people with disability."
The National Council for Disability Affairs presents proposals of disability laws for community dialogue and representatives of persons with disabilities are involved and some of their representative organizations. The National Council for Disability Affairs has been keen also to include disability component in a number of national strategies such as the Strategy of Education, the National Strategy for combating violence against women, and the National Strategy of Population.
It is worth mentioning that only limited numbers of organizations of persons with disabilities are invited to participate in decision-making processes compared to other civil society organizations. The vast majority of organizations of persons with disabilities work in the delivery of services and only a few of them work in human rights or development framework, and their capacities has not been raised to participate effectively in decision-making through training and rehabilitation due to the deficiencies in awareness, low economic status and the weakness of the cultural background in the Egyptian society.


  1. Please provide information on any consultative body or mechanism established to consult and engage with representative organizations of persons with disabilities, including information about their composition, criteria for membership (nomination, appointment, election, etc.) and functioning.

The Supreme Council for Rehabilitation prescribed by the rehabilitation act authorized by the ministerial decree No. 296 issued on 03/07/2008, has stated the formation of the council under the supervision of the Minister of Social Solidarity, and membership of the ministries and bodies concerned with issues of persons with disability: (Ministry of Health and Population, Industry, Finance, Education, Higher Education and Scientific Research, Al-Azhar, Manpower and Immigration, in addition to six members from those concerned with disability affairs and rehabilitation to ensure the rights of persons with disabilities through services provided by the Ministry of Social Affairs and other ministries concerned with such rights.


The supreme Council for Rehabilitation has the following terms of reference:

  • Study and prepare policy for the care of disabled categories on the scope of the republic.

  • Planning and coordination of special programs for rehabilitation, and employment of persons with disabilities.

  • Benefit from local and international expertise and plan for projects qualifying categories of people with disabilities.

Although he Supreme Council for Rehabilitation has included, in the last few years, representatives of disabled people in the various decision-making processes, it was not thoroughly done until the establishment of the National Council for Disability Affairs whose main goals are to tackle the issues and affairs of persons with disabilities in Egypt, and is considered as the advisory body that engages with representative organizations of persons with disabilities.


The National Council for Disability Affairs was established in April 2012 under the Ministerial Decree No. 410, as amended, and on the basis of Article No. 33 of the United Nations Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities, to be a council with advisory, coordination, and supervisory roles, and to have the following terms of reference:


  • Propose policies, strategies, programs and projects for community and health awareness to avoid the causes of disability and provide early detection for it.

  • Participate in national policies and strategic plans for the inclusion of persons with disabilities.

  • Proposing the state public policy in the fields of development, rehabilitation, inclusion and empowerment of persons with disabilities, and follow up their implementation, and developing a national strategy for the advancement of people with disabilities, and follow up its implementation.

  • Coordination with all competent ministries and bodies concerned with people with disabilities to deal with the obstacles and difficulties facing them for the application of the provisions of the UN Convention for the year 2007 and any other agreements relevant to people with disabilities, and to prepare annual reports to be presented to the President of the Republic, the Parliament, and the Prime Minister.

  • Propose and express an opinion on draft laws and decrees related to people with disabilities before being presented to the competent authority, and express an opinion on all international conventions related to them.

  • Supervising the activities of the associations and organizations of people with disabilities and report the results of supervision to the Ministry of Social Solidarity.

  • Representation of people with disabilities in all forums concerned with disability inside and outside Egypt, and holding conferences, seminars, panel discussions, training courses, and awareness on the role of persons with disabilities in community and their social, political rights and duties.

  • To establish a documentation center for information, data, statistics, studies and research relating to disability affairs, and the issuance of bulletins, magazines and publications related to the Council's objectives and terms of reference.

  • To issue an ID smart card for people with disabilities recognized by all authorities and entities.

  • Receive complaints about people with disabilities, discuss and propose appropriate solutions to them, and inform the competent authorities of any violation of the rights of persons with disabilities and dwarves.

  • Follow the implementation of laws and decisions issued on the educational and community inclusion of persons with disabilities.

  • Preparing the studies of sign language and the accreditation of its interpreters.



The board of directors of the National Council for Disability Affairs is headed by the Prime Minister and has the membership of:


  • Six government ministers (Minister of Health, Education, Social Solidarity, Population, Planning and Administrative Reform, and Labor).

  • Representatives for every disability and belong to Organizations of persons with disabilities.

  • Chairman of the Union of organizations of persons with disabilities.

  • Group of experts in different fields.

  • Public figures.

  • Secretary-General, preferably a person with disability.

Membership Criteria:


  • Selection of Secretary-General shall be by appointment by the Prime Minister in his capacity as Chairman of the Board.

  • Selection of board members from non-ministers shall be by nomination through the office of the Prime Minister, who consults whom he sees to reach the required nominations.




  1. Please provide information on the efforts undertaken at national, regional, and/or local levels to strengthen the capacity of representative organizations of persons with disabilities, in order to facilitate their participation in legislative policy and other decision-making processes.

There are a range of efforts undertaken by several national and international organizations to raise the capacity of representative organizations of persons with disabilities in order to facilitate their participation in the legislative and political decision-making and other decision-making processes, and these organizations can be divided as follows:


Government Agencies:


  • Some ministries such as the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the Ministry of Social Solidarity and State Information Authority.

  • Specialized national councils such as the National Council for Disability Affairs, the National Council for Human Rights and the National Council for Women.


Civil Society Organizations:


  • International organizations such as the Arab Organization for Persons with Disabilities (AODP), the International Organization on Disability (Handicap International), and Plan International.

  • National civil society organizations such as the Coptic Evangelical Organization (CEOSS), the Egyptian Center for Women's Rights.


Capacity Building areas included:


  • Studying the proposed disability laws.

  • Political Awareness.

  • Training on Leadership Skills.

  • Training on the Duties of the Parliament Member.

  • Training on Running for Local Elections.

- Election Campaigns Management.


  1. Please explain whether and how persons with disabilities participate in monitoring the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities (art. 33, para. 3), and in the nomination of experts to the committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (art. 34, para. 3).

Persons with disabilities submit individual complaints to the National Council for Disability Affairs on violations falling on them, which are in turn monitored and dealt with by the council. Until now Egypt did not submit any periodic reports to the UN committee on the rights of persons with disabilities due to Egypt's unstable Political Situation, Thus, the shadow report was not submitted from the organizations of persons with disabilities.


There is no mechanism for the nomination of experts for the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities so far, thus, there is no participation of persons with disabilities in the nomination of experts for the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.


  1. Please identify the main challenges faced by the diversity of persons with disabilities in participating in mainstream and disability-specific decision-making processes at the national, regional and local levels, including challenges faced by persons who experience multiple discrimination (e.g., on the basis of disability, age, gender, ethnic origin, geographical location).


There are a lot of obstacles and challenges that impede the participation of persons with disabilities in decision-making processes in general, including:


  • Lack of educational services and growing illiteracy rate among persons with disabilities.

  • Discrimination and the lack of accessibility in all its forms (spatial and technological devices) which hinders participation, even if the opportunity is available.

  • Lack of awareness for the community and persons with disabilities themselves on the importance of their participation in decision-making.

  • Cultural heritage and community perception of persons with disabilities as being unable to take decisions that affect them, and to take over their own affairs.


It is worth mentioning that Persons with disabilities in Egypt suffer from discrimination on the basis of disability, age, gender, ethnic origin, and geographical location. Challenges faced by people who suffer from multiple discrimination are:


  • People with multiple disabilities and women with disabilities are exposed to a multi-faceted discrimination as a result of the lack of awareness on their ability to manage their own affairs. For example, women in general do not have the full eligibility in some cultural legacies in the Middle East, and women with disabilities suffer from double discrimination because of gender and disability. In the eyes of some people, they are not able to take care of the family and home affairs or care for children, unlike men with disabilities who will be required only to work and get the financial needs of their families.

  • Lack of respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabilities in terms of their ability to represent and express themselves.

  • Shortage of services provided in the stage of early childhood, and child capabilities development.

  • The absence of specialized programs to train children on skills of selection and decision-making as a preparation for participation in decision-making.

  • The different religions and the emergence of new religious communities recently led to further discrimination against persons with disabilities.

  • There are ethnic minorities such as the Nubians who are subjected to discrimination because of their ethnic origin, including people with disabilities.

  • There is discrimination in participation in decision making on the basis of geographical location where there is control and rule of some families or tribes on opportunities to participate in decision-making which increases marginalization of persons with disabilities in these places.

  • Border areas in Egypt suffer from the growing marginalization and lack of basic services, the lack of means of communication and media, which in turn results in double discrimination for persons with disabilities in those areas.




______________________________________________________________________________
العنوان : مقر المجلس القومي لشئون الاعاقة - سراي القبة – أمام محطة مترو سراي القبة

تليفون : 01010628437 فاكس: 24530091

البريد الإلكتروني : hayam.ncda@gmail.com

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