We launched the findings of our research on ICT accessibility for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in Myanmar on 21 August 2018 at ParkRoyal, Yangon.
This was LIRNEasia’s first foray into systematically studying the subject, but will not be the last. Research from Nepal is to be released before the end of the year. We decided to embark on this study in Myanmar following questions on disability specific research from the audience at courses we conducted for Disabled Persons’ Organisations (DPOs) and Members of Parliament when we presented the findings of our broader research on ICTs in Myanmar.
As a result, we conducted qualitative research with 101 respondents with visual, hearing and physical disabilities in May 2018. The report launched in August is a reflection of the findings of that research, and examines the user experiences of PWDs’ use of ICTs, as well as the extent to which it could be used to assist them in fulfilling their day-to-day needs.
Many of the grievances expressed by the respondents– ranging from accessible public transportation and study materials, and equal opportunities for PWDs in workplaces– had been addressed in Myanmar Law on the Rights of PWDs. In many cases, the lack of progress stalled in its implementation, which the National Committee had oversight over. We were also happy to hear that the National Committee as specified in the Law had been established between the fieldwork of the research and the dissemination event.
The event, co-organized with the Myanmar Independent Living Initiative (MILI) and MIDO, saw the attendance of approximately 50 stakeholders, including Members of Parliament, representatives from DPOs, media and civil society organisations. Nay Lin Soe of MILI first welcomed the invitees after which I presented the findings of the research. We then had a panel discussion moderated by Htaike Htaike Aung of MIDO. The level of engagement of those who attended the event with the research findings was encouraging. U Zaw Win Naing from the Yangon Regional Parliament for instance, referred to legal documents during the panel discussion to better engage in the conversation.
The report launched at the event can be accessed here. We’re in the process of making some edits, and an updated version will be available shortly.
My slides from the launch of the event can be viewed here.
Photographs from the event will be available shortly.
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