by Tunde Oguntola
The World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) and CBM Global Disability Inclusion have expressed dissatisfaction over discrimination and lack of access to information by deaf women and girls while trying to access basic healthcare services in Nigeria.
The country director, CBM Global Disability Inclusion, Ms. Ekaete Umoh, disclosed this in Abuja yesterday during the unveiling of Research Report on ‘Barriers to Healthcare Access for Deaf Nigerian Women and Girls in Emergencies’, organised by the World Federation of Deaf (WFD) in collaboration with CBM Global Disability Inclusion.
Umoh lamented that despite Nigeria’s ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, CRPD, deaf women and girls are still largely discriminated against in terms of access to information before and during emergencies.
She called on all federal government and critical stakeholders to join in the implementation of the research recommendation.
“This report presents preliminary research on the experiences faced in healthcare by deaf women and girls in Nigeria, highlighting the most recent emergency and disaster situation, the Covid-19 pandemic.”
“The World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) seeks to address the intersection of being deaf and being a woman when facing emergency and disaster situations and requesting healthcare services.
“This report presents preliminary research on the experiences faced in healthcare by deaf women and girls in Nigeria, highlighting the most recent emergency and disaster situation, the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Despite Nigeria’s ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) on 24 September 2010, the Sendai Framework and their extant legal protocols which recognizes full and equal access and participation in societies and communities for persons with disabilities as a fundamental right, including in times of crisis, deaf women and girls are still largely discriminated in terms of access to information before and during emergencies,” she said.
The Healthcare Access project manager, World Federation of the Deaf, WFD, Dr Jolene Ogunjirin, also urged the federal government to invest in deaf education in order to lessen the difficulties and burdens deaf people encounter when trying to access healthcare.
According to Ogunjirin, deaf women and girls experience disparity in the quality of healthcare, reproductive health, and resources due to inadequate education and sign language personnel.
The acting director of Social Integration, National Commission for Persons with Disability (NCPWD), Lawrence Idemudia, promised to continue to partner with the organisations on issues of disability especially deaf women and girls.
Also, the Joint Association of Persons with Disability, Uche Andrew appealed to relevant government authorities to make provision for sign language interpreters as well as adequate education for the deaf to enhance their inclusiveness in the areas of communication.