ALSO organized a round table at Negah television, Mr. Hussain Ahmadi from ALSO participated in this program. The objective of the round table was to discuss about political rights of persons with disabilities. Based on the article 29th of Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities CRPD government has been obligated to provide equal opportunities to PWDs that they can fully participate in the elections to enjoy their political rights on equal basis.
1. First, government ensures that all the polling centers, voting procedures, materials should be accessible that PWDs can use easily.
2. Secondly, ensure that PWDs be able to vote freely without any impressions. As well they have right to get assistance of their own chosen person to vote at the polling station.
However, based on the ALSO’ observation in the parliamentary elections PWDs were encounter numerous barriers as they participated in the elections. For instance, low awareness of Independent Election Commissions (IEC) staff, community member on the rights of persons with disabilities , lack of physical accessibility at polling centers, negative behaviors of the election participants, not giving priorities to PWDs at the lines of voting. In cause of the theses challenges Mr. Ahmadi recommended as the following:
The polling centers and polling stations should be physically accessible for persons with disabilities so that persons with disabilities to be able to participate in the election process to enjoy their political rights on equal basis.
The staff of IEC should be trained on the rights and needs of PWDs including how to support them on the Election Day and the IEC should increase the level of is public awareness specific messages to encourage persons with disabilities to take part in elections.
The messages should focus on giving priorities to persons with disabilities in the elect process by people, observers and staff of IEC. The message should encourage the families to provide support for their members with disabilities to practice their political rights in the election process. As well the voting materials should be accessible for the all categories of PWDs.