9 Oct 2012

Pacific governments need to understand disabilities before changes are made

4:26 pm on 9 October 2012

The president of the Fiji Disabled Peoples Federation says changes to the way people treat those with disabilities won't be made until there are more people in power who understand disabilities.

Pacific Islands Forum Ministers in charge of disability issues have agreed to push their agenda, following a meeting in Papua New Guinea last week.

Sumasafu Vilsoni, who went to the meeting, says many ministers are unaware of the reality of life for disabled people.

"A lot of times they are not getting in touch with people with disabilities and in the meeting we were able to share some of these things that actually happened and help them to understand, but not just to understand. It really motivates them to do something about it."

Mr Vilsoni says without this understanding of disabilities at the highest level, little progress will be made.