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WHOs International Classification of Functioning and Disability ICIDH2


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Title: WHOs International Classification of Functioning and Disability ICIDH2

Decent Work and People with DisabilitiesThe
Role of Trade Unions
Debra A. Perry Senior Specialist in Vocational
Rehabilitation Bangkok, Thailand
? The changing concept of disability ? Decent
work facts and issues ? The ILO principles
related to people with disabilities ? What can
unions do?
  • Do you know a disabled
  • person?
  • What is his or her
  • disability?
  • What does he or she do for a living?

  • What is Disability?
  • Loss of functioning
  • Physical
  • Sensory
  • Intellectual
  • Mental/Psychiatric

Dimensions of disability People with
disabilities are not a homogeneous group
  • Type of disability
  • Physical
  • Sensory
  • Intellectual
  • Psychiatric
  • Severity
  • Severe
  • Moderate
  • Mild
  • Onset
  • Birth
  • Childhood
  • Adulthood
  • Visibility
  • Observable
  • Invisible
  • Causes
  • ? Birth Defect
  • ? Accident
  • ? Illness
  • ? Other

Gender makes a huge difference
ILO DefinitionAn individual whose prospects of
securing and retaining suitable employment are
substantially reduced as a result of physical or
mental impairment (introduced in R 99).
Changing concepts of disability
Human rights issue
Economics of disability
The New Disability Business Case
Changing concepts A human rights issue
  • From welfare to medical to social model
  • From a charity to rights
  • The social environment creates the disadvantages
    people with disabilities face

International conventions and initiatives
  • 1955 ILO VR Recommendation No. 99
  • 1971 UN Declaration on the Rights of Mentally
    Retarded Persons
  • 1975 UN Declaration on the Rights of Disabled
  • 1981 UN International Year of Disabled Persons
  • 1982 UN World Programme of Action Concerning
    Disabled Persons
  • 1983-1992 UN Decade of Disabled Persons
  • 1983 ILO VR (Disabled) Convention No. 159
  • 1983 ILO VR (Disabled) Recommendation No. 168
  • 1993 UN Standard Rules on the Equalization of
    Opportunities for Persons with
  • 1993-2002 Asian and Pacific Decade of Disabled
  • 2001 ILO Code of Practice for Managing
    Disability in the Workplace
  • 2003-2012 Second Asia and Pacific Decade of
    Disabled Persons
  • Current Drafting of the UN Convention on the
    Rights and Protection of Persons with

Asia and Pacific Decade of Disabled Persons
  • Regional initiative by ESCAP and governments in
    the region to improve the situation of disabled
  • Adopted the Biwako Millennium Framework of Action
    towards an Inclusive, Barrier-Free and
    Rights-Based Society
  • Seven target areas, including training and
  • Calls for rights-based, anti-discrimination
    policies and legislation for people with
    disabilities that is developed in conjunction
    with social partners, including workers

National approaches changing legislation
Charity Law, No Law
Welfare Law
Rights-based Law
Changing concepts Disability as an economic
  • People with disability among the poorest of the
  • Skyrocketing costs related to disability
  • World Bank estimate of social exclusion US1.37
    trillion to US1.94 trillion of global GDP or
    2,486 to 5,135 per disabled person annually
  • Finland Disability-related spending is 13.9
    GDP 10 of labour force on disability pension in
  • Australia People on Disability Support
    Pensions---up more than 60 in last 10 years
    similar statistics in Canada and UK
  • Vocational rehabilitation and return to work of
    injured workers makes economic sense for the
    individual and society

Changing concepts The new disability business
  • Articulated in Unlocking Potential and
  • Managing diversity, which includes disabled
    workers, is a major factor in efficiency,
    productivity and overall success
  • People with disabilities are good workers
  • Hiring and retaining improves team work---group
  • People with disabilities are customers

Hiring and retaining disabled and injured workers
make business sense
  • So why arent more disabled people working?
  • What barriers to do they face?

Barriers to Decent Work
Negative attitudes and stereotypes
Lack of data
Lack of policy support/integration
Unequal access toeducation, training and
employment services
Psychosocial issues
Lack of support services and information geared
to their needs
Lack of trained and unbiased personnel
Lack of accessibility
How big is the problem?
  • 600 million disabled people worldwide
  • 370 million in Asia
  • 386 million of working-age worldwide
  • 238 million in Asia are of working age
  • Only 10 percent of disabled children are in
    primary school
  • Most live in rural areas
  • Unemployment rates are double that of the general
    population and as high as 80 percent
  • Disability and poverty are linked 20 percent of
    the worlds poor are disabled

Disability and Decent Work
  • People with disabilities are
  • Able to work
  • Many want to work
  • Research shows they made good employees overall
  • Many have work histories and skills, especially
    those who have work-related disabilities

Decent work and disability
  • People with disabilities overall
  • Face social exclusion, discrimination
  • More likely to be poor and out of the labour
    force---with as many as 50 to 90 percent
  • Make less money when they do work at less decent
  • Injured workers
  • Face barriers to returning to work
  • Returning rates vary from 40 to 70 percent for
    back injured according to recent study of some
    Western countries (ISSA, 2002)

  • What is the ILO doing to improve the situation
    for people with disabilities?

Means of Action
  • Knowledge Country studies, Web site, examples of
    good practice
  • Advocacy Promotion of standards, BMF, Code
    engagement of social partners raising awareness
  • Technical assistance Policy advice, projects,
    awareness training, technical training, etc.

ILO Disability-specific standards
  • ILO Recommendation 99 Concerning Vocational
    Rehabilitation, 1955
  • ILO Convention 159 Concerning Vocational
    Rehabilitation and Employment (Disabled Persons),
  • ILO Recommendation 168, 1983
  • ILO Code of Practice for Managing Disability in
    the Workplace, 2002

ILO Principles
  • Decent work for all - non-discrimination
  • Government policy on vocational rehabilitation
  • Equal treatment and equal opportunity
  • Involve all disability groups, women and men,
    rural and urban
  • Tripartite consultations, plus disabled persons
  • Mainstreaming in training and employment,
    whenever possible
  • Special measures allowed, such as affirmative
  • Trained personnel

ILO Code of practice for managing disability in
the workplace Targets employers
  • Provides practical guidance to ensure equal
    opportunities and treatment of disabled workers
    in the workplace
  • Identifies duties of competent authorities,
    workers representatives and employers
  • Addresses the specific issues related to
    recruitment, promotion, job retention and
    adjustments for disabled workers
  • Promotes safe and accessible workplaces
  • Minimizes employer costs related to disability
  • Maximizes contributions of employees with

  • Why should trade unions get involved with workers
    with disabilities?

Why Should Trade UnionsGet Involved?
? Mission/history Workers Compensation
Social Protection Related Issues ?
Philosophy Concern about rights and equity
Solidarity ? Community linkages and capacity
Workers injured on the job
Disabled Peoples Organi-sations
Job Seekers with Disabilities
Co- Workers
The Media
Vocational Rehabilitation Centres
Workers organisations
The School-System
Vocational Training Centres
Vocational Counselling and Guidance
Employers Organisa-tions
Placement Services
Ministry of Labour and/or Employment
  • What can
  • trade unions do to help people with disabilities?
  • What is your trade union doing?

  • What does the ILO say about what trade unions can

Convention 159 (1983)
? Develop a national policy on vocational
rehabilitation ? Consult with employers and
workers ? Promote cooperation and coordination
Recommendation 168 Specific Guidance for
Employers Workers
? Adopt an internal policy ? Contribute to
national or local policy on VR ? Participate on
boards of NGOs ? Cooperate with specialists to
reintegrate disabled workers injured on the
job ? Facilitate employment of other disabled
persons ? Operated vocational rehabilitation
services whenever possible and include disabled
persons in existing services
Recommendation 168 Specific Guidance for
Workers Organizations
? Promote participation of disabled workers on
shop floor ? Propose guidelines for VR and
protection of disabled workers in collective
agreements, regulations, arbitration awards,
etc. ? Offer advice on the shop floor with regard
to disabled workers issues ? Raise disability
issues at trade union meetings ? Inform members
through publications, seminars etc.
ILO Code of Practice on Managing Disability in
the Workplace
  • - Advocate for employment and training
  • - Encourage PWDs to join and take leadership
  • - Represent disabled worker interests in all
    activities and negotiations
  • - Train and sensitize members about disability
  • - Promote a healthy workplace
  • - Promote introduction of disability management
  • - Raise employers awareness about laws and
  • Encourage members to cooperate in return to work
  • Serve as a model employer and integrate all
    aspects of the Code in hiring and managing
    disabled employees

  • What are some examples of what trade unions have

Fostering Community Integration
  • Example Assembly of Trade Unions, Japan
  • 1970s request from a member with a disabled child
  • Established a foundation supported by sale of
    matches, later tissues
  • Started a counseling service/telephone hotline
    for parents
  • Parents lobbied for railway accessibility
  • Established a vocational experience program for
    youth with disabilities

Providing Training and Skills Development
Example Federation of German Trade
Unions ? Position paper stating policy for
integrated employment ? Supports access to
apprenticeships for disabled persons, especially
for women with disabilities who face double
discrimination ? Advocates for union activities
that promote overall social integration,
including accessible transportation
Providing Training and Skills Development
  • Operates 3 employment support for people with
  • Services include assessment,
  • counseling and guidance,work,
  • vocational training, supported
  • employment, placement
  • Former union members as job coaches

Kanagawa Regional Council of the Japanese
Electrical Electronic and Information Union
Providing Training and Skill Development
Example Trade Union Federation, DIGNITE, Cote
dIvoire ? Created a fellowship program so
students with a disabilities can attend
school ? Organize and facilitate vocational
training and apprenticeships for school leavers
with disabilities
Improving Employment Practices
Example Trade Union Federation in Cote dIvoire
?Created an internal unit for people with
disabilities ?Are lobbying for national
employment legislation for disabled persons to
include a quota, special fund, and support for
micro-enterprise and cooperative development
Improving Employment Practices
Example The Irish Congress of Trade
Unions ? Published and disseminated the Charter
of Rights of People with Disabilities ? Lists
18 fundamental rights to full equality of
people with disabilities in the workplace
Promoting the Rights and Reintegrationof
Injured/Disabled Workers
Example IAM Boeing Health and Safety Institute
for Returning Injured Workers to the Job ? A
labour-management program ? Provides return to
work services that include early intervention,
quick responses, professional case management,
job accommodations etc. ? The unions IAM CARES
program provides services, which are paid by the
employer according to a collective bargaining
Promoting the Rights and Reintegrationof
Injured/Disabled Workers
Example Finnish Employees Confederation ? Coope
rates with employers to prevent industrial
accidents through on-the-job measures, training,
ergonomic adaptation etc. ?Operates training
programs and reintegration schemes for injured
Serving as a Model of Inclusion
Example Unison, British trade union
representing public workers ? Organizes union
and vocational training programs for members with
a disabilities ? Uses ergonomic measures to
facilitate workplace integration ? Promotes
awareness raising campaigns ? Uses member
subscription and private funds
Serving as a Model of Inclusion
Example American Postal Workers Union ? Set-up
a special task force for deaf workers ? Holds
several seminars for hearing impaired
workers ? Members serve on committees to resolve
disability issues ? Convinced the postal service
to issue the special I love you sign language
  • What could your
  • union do?

A Summary What You Can Do
? National - Advocate for legislation and
policy. ? Community - Collaborate with social
partners/others. - Promote awareness. ?
Union - Develop internal policies and codes of
practice. - Inform and educate
members. - Provide assistance to disabled
workers/ their families. - Protect
workers rights related to disability
issues. ? Enterprise - Collaborate with
management. - Represent worker interests on
shop floor. - Assist disabled workers.
How to Begin
? Get to know disabled people, especially your
disabled members ? Learn about legislation and
policy related to disability ? Talk to other
social partners ? Reach out to organizations of
and for disabled persons ? Find out about what
other unions have done ? Determine what the
needs are in your country ? Find support within
your union and form a committee to study the
issue ? Develop a plan of action
  • What specifically will you do?

  • For more information
  • ilo.org
  • ilo.org/abilityasia
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