Several hundred physically or mentally impaired people and their supporters took to the streets of Taipei yesterday, calling on the government to establish an antidiscrimination law to uphold equal employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
The annual event was held by a coalition of civic groups representing a broad spectrum of disability rights, including advocates for blind, deaf and mentally or physically impaired people. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) advocates joined in, saying that they stood in solidarity with other underprivileged and discriminated groups.
This year’s event focused on demands for the government to uphold equal employment rights for physically or mentally impaired people in the job market, with participants calling for an end to discrimination.
Photo: Wang Min-wei, Taipei Times
Following a rally in front of the Ministry of Labor building, participants marched through central Taipei, ending the event with a gathering on Ketagalan Boulevard, in front of the Presidential Office Building.
Organizers specifically designed the event to enable the full participation of different groups, with dozens of protesters on wheelchairs involved and a sign language interpreter signing throughout the event.
At one point, the demonstrators lay down on the road at the intersection of Zhongxiao E Road and Zhongshan N Road, stopping traffic for 10 minutes, as they demanded their voices be heard.
“Having a steady job is important in maintaining the integrity of physically impaired people, but we often do not have that opportunity in the first place,” disability rights advocate Weng Yu-ling (翁玉玲) said.
One participant, nicknamed Hsiao-wen (小聞), said he faced discrimination as a hard-of-hearing person.
He said that his employer, a public sector agency, was willing to employ him only on a contract basis for six months at a time, asking him to find employment elsewhere for three months at the end of each stint before they would employ him again.
Other participants said businesses often canceled scheduled job interviews once they learned about their disabilities.
Those with jobs said that physically impaired employees were often limited to positions as interns or part-time staff, and often had difficulty getting promoted, even if they excelled at their job.
A series of discussions on the legacy of martial law and authoritarianism are to be held at the Taipei International Book Exhibition this month, featuring findings and analysis by the Transitional Justice Commission. The commission and publisher Book Republic organized the series, entitled “Escaping the Nation’s Labyrinth of Memory: What Authoritarian Symbols and Records Can Tell Us,” to help people navigate narratives through textual analysis and comparisons with other nations. The four-day series is to begin on Thursday next week with a discussion between commission Chairwoman Yang Tsui (楊翠), Polish-language translator Lin Wei-yun (林蔚昀), and Polish author and artist Pawel Gorecki comparing
‘EFFECTIVE DETERRENCE’: If the Biden administration suspends arms sales to Taiwan, the military could still ready a nimble fighting force for defense, an analyst said The “US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific” last week sparked debate among analysts after US President Donald Trump declassified the document 20 years ahead of schedule. Trump on Tuesday last week released the document that had governed US strategic action in the region since the US leader approved its use in 2018. The document, which outlines US priorities in the region, emphasizes the importance of defending Taiwan against military aggression and facilitating the country’s development of asymmetric strategies and capabilities. The overall directive of the document is for the US to prevent China from establishing sustained air and sea dominance inside the first
MOVING OUT: A former professor said that rent and early education costs in Taipei are the nation’s highest, which makes it difficult for young people to start families The population of Taipei last year fell to the lowest in 23 years due to high rent, more transportation options and the expansion of northern cities into a single metropolis, academics and city officials said on Monday. Data released this month by the Ministry of the Interior showed that the capital was home to 2,602,418 people last year, down 42,623 from 2019. The decline is second only to 1993, when the population fell by 42,828 people, while Taipei’s population was the lowest it has been since 1997. Taipei saw the biggest drop among the six special municipalities, while Taoyuan led the group in
A legislator yesterday called for authorities to investigate the sale of Chinese-made, Internet-connected karaoke machines containing “propaganda songs.” Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chen Ting-fei (陳亭妃) said she was approached by a person who had discovered Chinese patriotic songs such as My Motherland (我的祖國) — which is commonly referred to as China’s “second national anthem” — in Chinese-made karaoke devices sold in Taiwan. The machines are popular, as they can connect to the Internet, providing access to thousands of songs, she said. One retailer, who asked to remain anonymous, said that the machines first entered the local market about three years ago, starting with