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19 March 2014

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Countryman - The two people you have mentioned here and many others like them are evil.

You had earlier talked about organising people living with disabilities in Simbu in an earlier article. I think that is fantastic move forward.

Through that, members can be made aware of their rights and other areas of support that should be made available through the government system.

As I am writing this comment, a copy of the PNG National Policy on Disability is staring at me right in the face.

I am not sure how the policy has been implemented in Simbu. (You can shed some light.)

Keep us posted so, when we are in the province from time to time, we can try and participate as observers in some of your activities and even maybe offer assistance where it can make a difference.

Waiwo!

I don't know that there was ever any "traditional aversion to the disabled" in PNG.

In my experience disabled people, both physically and mentally, were well looked after in the village. Maybe my experience was in the wrong places.

The only thing remotely related to "aversion" was perhaps the infanticide of deformed babies, a practise that probably still occurs in more remoter areas.

That unscrupulous people now take advantage of disabled people is very regrettable but it is not a phenomenon peculiar to PNG.

The way to turn this on its head is to do like Francis suggests and get organised. Many disabled people are smart so this shouldn't be too hard.

Introduce an accreditation system so that only registered organisations can collect funds on behalf of disabled people. This can be done privately and doesn't need the government.

When the unscrupulous can't prove they are endorsed to collect money on behalf of the disabled people won't give it to them - or perhaps they will?

Good thinking. It is likely the "able-corrupters of principle" are seeming to prosper because of the relative indifference of the general community toward their disabled members.

Your article is a timely warning to those community stakeholders that they must overcome traditional aversion to the disabled, and promote the raising of levels of care and opportunity as you have already mentioned.

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