Unit 5: Human Resource in Disability Sector:

5.1    Human resource development in disability sector Current status, Needs, Issues and the importance of working within an ethical framework;

5.2  Role of international bodies (International Disability Alliance (IDA) UNESCO, UNICEF UNDP, WHO) in Disability Rehabilitation Services;

5.3  International conventions and Policies such as UNCRPD, MDGs and SDGs;

5.4  Role of National Institutes (AYJNISLD, ISLRTC, NIEPID, NIEPMD, NIEPVD, NILD, NIMHR, PDUNIPPD, SVNIRTAR) in Disability Rehabilitation Services;

5.5   Role of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in disability inclusive services and development programs;












5.1 Human resource development in disability sector Current status, Needs, Issues and the importance of working within an ethical framework;

Organizations are increasingly aware that a better vocational inclusion of persons with disabilities (PWD) is in their self-interest for reasons such as a shortage of skilled labor, an increasing prevalence of disability in their aging workforces, and changed societal attitudes and laws regarding the promotion of diversity and equity in the workplace. Human resource (HR) practices have been identified as a primary enabler of inclusion, yet research on disability-related HR Management is scattered across disciplines. 

Among the other factors of production, labour i.e. human resource is the most important factor. Every organisation depends not so much on either material or financial resources, but it mainly depends on the able and willing human resource for its growth and success. When the human resource are motivated to use their talents for creating new ideas, then there is no limit to what the people can accomplish. No other resource can do what a human resource do. All the other resources are inanimate and cannot act in the way how the human resource reacts. Compared to other resources, only human resource can help the organisation to attain sustained competitive advantages. Moreover, human resources appreciate in value by increasing experience and skills but other resources generally depreciate as the time goes on.

Human Resource development and Disability

Disability rehabilitation in India has a long past but a short scientific history. Groups and individuals initiated for betterment and improvement of the disabled person but unfortunately these efforts were individualistic and perhaps unorganized and ad-hoc in nature though they were committed to improve the condition of disabled persons. There was little concern for systematic and scientific efforts in this direction. Systematic efforts has started as of IYDP 1981.

Disability though to a large extent inherited, environment has a substantial role to play in growth and development. One can visualize disability Rehabilitation and HRD

The following model would explain the range of activities in relation to Human Resource


5.2 Role of International bodies (International Disability Alliance (IDA) UNESCO, UNICEF UNDP, WHO) in Disability Rehabilitation Services

The UN Declaration on the Rights of Mentally Retarded Persons6 and the Declaration on the Rights of Disabled Persons, adopted in the 1970s, were the first international instruments to set forth human rights principles relating specifically to persons with disabilities. The adoption of these instruments represented, at the time, progress in terms of situating disability rights on the international agenda. Nonetheless, these documents were soon seen as outdated by the disability community for their approach to disability as they reflected medical and charity models of disability which served to reinforce paternalistic attitudes (Oliver 1996). Progressively, the disability community supported a social model of disability, which offered a fundamental conceptual shift “away from focusing on the physical limitations of particular individuals to the way the physical and social environments impose limitations on certain groups or categories of people”.

On December 19, 2001, the UN General Assembly, with resolution 56/168, established an Ad Hoc Committee "to consider proposals for a comprehensive and integral international convention to promote and protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities, based on the holistic approach in the work done in the fields of social development, human rights and non-discrimination and taking into account the recommendations of the Commission on Human Rights and the Commission for Social Development."

The CRPD expressly recognizes that international cooperation supports national efforts to effectively implement States Parties’ obligations. States Parties are to cooperate internationally through partnerships with other States, and/or with relevant international and regional organizations and civil society in support of national measures to give effect to the CRPD. Specifically, Article 32 identifies a range of measures that States can take within the framework of international cooperation which include inter alia: (1) “capacity building, including through the exchange and sharing of information, experiences, training programs and best-practices”; (2) research programs and the facilitation of access to scientific knowledge; and (3) technical and economic assistance, including the facilitation of access to accessible and assistive technologies. In addition, Article 32 also states “that international cooperation, including international development programmes, is inclusive of and accessible to persons with disabilities,” thus Article 32 has important provisions not only for State Parties, but also for bilateral and multilateral development partners.

·      Working with the private sector and funding institutions to influence their policies and practices to include issues of disabilities and other development issues, specially the issues of women and children.

·      Working with UN and other international bodies for regular updates from all over the World.

·      Signing and ratification of different UN treaty and policy formulation to fulfill that obligations. The policies  should govern  the various laws and programmes. The proper budget allocation for implementation of those programmes.

·      Formulation of rules and provisions for the Corporate and privale sector to motivate them to join hands with the Govt. and NGOs for the development of the nation through a right based model.

International Disability Alliance (IDA)

The International Disability Alliance is an alliance of eight global and six regional organisations of persons with disabilities. They advocate at the UN for a more inclusive global environment for persons with disabilities and their organisations. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is their touchstone. They are invested in ensuring that the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals are inclusive and in line with CRPD. They support organisations of persons with disabilities worldwide to take part in UN and international human rights processes, and use international accountability mechanisms.

With member organisations globally, IDA represents the estimated one billion people worldwide with disabilities. This is the world’s largest and most frequently overlooked marginalised group. IDA, with its unique composition as a network of the foremost international disability rights organisations, is the most authoritative representation of persons with disabilities on the global level, and acknowledged as such by the United Nations system both in New York and Geneva.

The cornerstone of their work is the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD). They promote the effective and full implementation of the UN CRPD, and compliance by governments and the UN System, through the active and coordinated involvement of representative organisations of persons with disabilities at the national, regional and international levels. The 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals are also integral to IDA's work to promote inclusive, sustainable development in line with the UN CRPD and the rights of persons with disabilities.

Their Principles


Persons with disabilities are more likely to be out of school or to leave school before completing primary or secondary education.

Article 24 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities stipulate that countries must take steps to ensure that persons with disabilities access an inclusive, quality and free primary and secondary education on an equal basis with others in the communities in which they live.

Through a rights-based approach, UNESCO encourages the development and implementation of inclusive education policies, programmes and practices to ensure equal education opportunities for persons with disabilities.

UNESCO promotes effective practices and knowledge sharing through various platforms, such as the Inclusive education in action: Empowering teachers, empowering learners website, developed in cooperation with the European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education and the online Knowledge Community on ‘Building Inclusive Societies for Persons with Disabilities’.

UNESCO supports countries in their efforts towards the inclusion of children with diverse learning challenges and children with disabilities in education through the development of guidelines and tools, teacher training and the use of ICTs in education.

Advocacy and awareness raising are another area of UNESCO’s actions to ensure the fulfillment of the right to education for persons with disabilities. This includes celebration of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, on 3 December.

UNESCO’s actions are carried out with key partners and networks, such as the Global Partnership for Children with Disabilities, co-led with UNICEF and Leonard Cheshire Disability, an international NGO in official partnership with UNESCO.

UN Children's Fund (UNICEF)

UNICEF is the driving force that helps build a world where the rights of every child are realized. UNICEF was created with the purpose to work with others to overcome the obstacles that poverty, violence, disease and discrimination place in a child’s path.

IDA has established a very close relationship with UNICEF, in particular following the appointment of a Senior Disability Advisor.

United Nations Development Programme

UNDP recognizes the centrality of human rights to sustainable development, poverty alleviation and ensuring a fair distribution of development opportunities and benefits. UNDP is committed to supporting universal respect for, and observance of, human rights and fundamental freedoms for all. UNDP’s Strategic Plan, 2018 – 2021, aims to support countries in addressing development challenges and recognizes that a set of core development needs underpin those challenges including the need to strengthen gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, and to ensure the protection of human rights.

As the development branch of the UN system, UNDP supports member states as they seek to achieve the SDGs by 2030 and fulfil their human rights obligations under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD); we do so through a human rights-based approach to our programming. The CRPD and the SDGs are the twin frameworks which are mutually reinforcing and within which UNDP supports disability inclusive development.


To improve access to and coverage of health services for people with disability, WHO:


5.3 International conventions and Policies such as UNCRPD, MDGs and SDGs

UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) is an international treaty which identifies the rights of disabled people as well as the obligations on Parliament and the NI Assembly to promote, protect and ensure those rights. It aims to ensure that disabled people enjoy the same human rights as everyone else and that they can participate fully in society by receiving the same opportunities as others.

By ratifying the UN Convention in 2009, the UK is committed to promoting and protecting the full enjoyment of human rights by disabled people and ensuring they have full equality under the law. The Convention covers a wide range of areas including:

·       health

·       education

·       employment

·       access to justice

·       personal security

·       independent living, and

·       access to information.


Millennium Development Goals

The eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – which ranged from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015 – formed a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and all the world’s leading development institutions. They have galvanized unprecedented efforts to meet the needs of the world’s poorest. However, approximately 426 million people with disabilities in developing countries live below the poverty line. Lack of access and inclusion for persons with disabilities in policies and programmes aimed at achieving the MDGs means that the achievement of the MDGs is impossible.

However, a key failure of the MDGs has been the exclusion of disability issues and disabled people in the process. Ten percent of the global population is disabled (WHO) and yet not one of the MDG indicators addresses the rights and needs of disabled people. The impact of this exclusion is considerable:

- Only one to two percent of disabled children in developing countries go to school (UNESCO)
- Eighty two percent of disabled people live below the poverty line (World Bank)

The MDGs will not be achieved unless the rights of disabled people are comprehensively mainstreamed in all development action - with disabled people involved in decision-making at all levels.

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

The CRPD significantly altered the environment, the expectations and the participation of persons with disabilities in the creation of the 2030 Agenda, and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals, a universal commitment by all UN Member States. 

The 2030 Agenda and CRPD should be used together: in order to implement sustainable development in any given country, it will also need to implement the CRPD. Through the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, more resources and data will be available for implementation of the CRPD. It is up to DPOs and their partners, including governments, to provide this connection and synergy between the two instruments for the benefit of the rights of persons with disabilities.

‘Leave no one behind’ is the overarching principle of the Sustainable Development Goals. All the targets of the 2030 Agenda are universal i.e. they include everybody without an exception. UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is one of the guiding frameworks for the implementation of SDGs thus ensuring inclusion and equal participation of PwDs. These global goals have opened doors of opportunities, participation and recognition for persons with physical and intellectual disabilities.


5.4 Role of National Institutes (AYJNISLD, ISLRTC, NIEPID, NIEPMD, NIEPVD, NILD, NIMHR, PDUNIPPD, SVNIRTAR) in Disability Rehabilitation Services

Objectives of National Institutes

National Institutes are engaged in Human Resource Development in the field of disability, providing rehabilitation services to the Persons with Disabilities and undertaking Research and Development efforts. National Institutes also provide vocational skill training, placement and distribution of assistive aids and appliances to PwDs.

There are nine National Institutes under this Ministry working in the field of disability. National Institutes are autonomous bodies established for different types of disabilities.  These institutes are engaged in Human Resources Development in the field of disability, providing rehabilitation services to the persons with disabilities and Research and Development efforts:-

(i)      National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (NIEPVD), Dehradun: The government of India provides numerous support for the empowerment of PWD. Hence the government is giving the special attention for the people with visual disabilities including the braille system in educational sector, employment opportunities and so on. The National institute for the empowerment of person with visual disability (NIEPVD) is one of the major organization launched by the government of India for the People with Visual Disability(PVD). This organization is giving a handholding support, rehabilitation services, Educational services, creating employment opportunities, medical services and so on. NIEPVD taking the major role in providing special education courses, research development, application technology and so on. Their important responsibilities are make them to educate and to learn the braille system, manufacturing braille appliances, providing skill development activities for the VD.

(ii)     Ali Yavar Jung National Institute of Speech and Hearing Disabilities (AYJNISHD), Mumbai

(iii)    National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities  (NIEPID), Secunderabad

(iv)    National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities (NIEPMD), Chennai

(v)     Pt. Deendayal Upadhyaya National Institute for Persons with Physical Disabilities (PDUNIPPD), Delhi

(vi)    Swami Vivekanand National Institute of the Rehabilitation Training and Research (SVNIRTAR), Cuttack.

(vii)   National Institute for Locomotor Disabilities (NILD), Kolkata

(viii)  Indian Sign Langauge Research & Training Centre (ISLRTC), New Delhi  

(ix)    National Institute of Mental Health and Rehabilitation (NIMHR), Sehore, Madhya Pradesh

The Persons with Multiple Disabilities have equal rights to lead a better quality of life. This may be enabled with committed professionalism, accessible environment, equal opportunities, positive attitudes and appropriate, affordable, acceptable and available technological interventions.

The mission is to provide need based comprehensive rehabilitation through team approach facilitating inclusion, ensuring empowerment of persons with Multiple Disabilities and their families and by substantiating field based research and development of human resources.

To meet the requirements of specific disabilities, Govt of India has established 7 National Institutes in specific disabilities under the Department. These are engaged in Human Resource Development, providing Rehabilitation Services to the persons with disabilities and Research & Development. These Institutes are engaged in Human Resource Development in the field of disability, providing rehabilitation services to the Persons with Disabilities and undertaking Research and Development efforts.


5.5 Role of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in disability inclusive services and development programs

In an increasingly digital age, information and communication technologies (ICTs) offer new ways of meeting this commitment towards those members of our society who have disabilities. While there have been great advances in the development of specialized assistive technology, such as microprocessor-controlled prosthetics or digital hearing aids, more general-purpose technologies, such as ordinary computers, tablets and smartphones, offer significant opportunities for broader social and economic inclusion of persons with disabilities. Real-life examples include:

All of these examples show that the ICTs in widespread use today can make a significant difference in the lives of persons with disabilities. Unfortunately, their use of ICTs can be limited by their lack of access to technology. Barriers to access can include a lack of awareness of available technologies and of what can be achieved through their use, a lack of available training in their adaptive use, and a lack of financial resources to purchase the hardware, software, network connectivity and specialized support equipment that may be necessary. Thus, there is a need for initiatives that build awareness, expand digital literacy, finance the acquisition of devices and software, and provide technical support for the use of ICTs among the disabled. 

Both governments and private institutions have a responsibility to ensure that the means through which they digitally interface with the public – such as websites, apps, and electronic kiosks – can be used by those who are visually or mobility impaired. Sadly, this is not universally the case; in the Caribbean, even many government web portals fail to meet this standard. Clearly, ICT specialists are in need of training to ensure that the systems they build and services they provide are compliant with established accessibility guidelines for digital content.

Implementing programmes to meet these challenges costs money. Unfortunately, funds to support access for those with disabilities are often not prioritized in national budgets to the extent that they are needed. However, most Caribbean countries now have Universal Service Funds (USFs) - paid for out of a surtax on telecommunications services - which offer a potential vehicle to fund initiatives for expanding access to technology among persons with disabilities. Indeed, USF-funded projects in Jamaica and Saint Lucia, among others, have provided important means of reducing barriers to ICT access for the disabled, such as through the distribution of laptops or through financial assistance to ICT-based initiatives spearheaded by disability support organisations. In many cases, however, these funds have been underutilized. There is a need to alert organizations that support persons with disabilities to the potential availability of USF funding for ICT-related projects, and to help them clear any regulatory, compliance, or organisational difficulties associated with making use of these resources.