Welfare organizations yesterday criticized politicians for not doing more to address the needs of people with physical disabilities so that they can live normal lives.
Hsieh Dong-ru (謝東儒) the Secretary-General of the League of Welfare Organizations, said "What we have cared most about is which cities and counties have made the most effort to get rid of obstacles for the physically disabled."
He also said that cases such as Yen Hsu-nan (顏旭男) showed that the nation needs to do much more for the disabled. Yen suffered from a genetic disorder in which the bones break easily. Yen died earlier this year from injuries sustained after a student who was carrying him on his back accidentally slipped and fell.
In a short sketch portraying politicians vying for votes in the Dec. 3 local government elections, "candidates" were shown saying "There aren't enough funds, we can't do any more for the physically handicapped."
Huang Ming-rong, a member of the League of Welfare Organizations said, "Areas in which the most is being done for the physically disabled aren't necessarily the most wealthy."
She announced that Taipei County ranked first in helping people with physical disabilities, followed by Ilan County and Taichung County. These rankings were based on the counties' provision of social benefits, education and facilities for people with physical disabilities.
Peter Lin (林進興), chair of the League of Welfare Organizations, said that cash relief wasn't what was most required.
"That only helps to relieve difficulties temporarily," he said. "What is most needed is for us to be able to function without fears and restrictions, to play a meaningful role in society and to live with dignity," he added.
He said that what people with disabilities most sought was better employment opportunities, better educational provisions and assistance in medical settings.
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