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Support for people with disability in the Pacific

Hon Tariana Turia
Minister for Disability Issues
23 October 2009 Media Release

NZ support for people with disability in the Pacific

Minister for Disability Issues Tariana Turia has today stressed New Zealand’s commitment to increasing social and economic participation by people with disability in the Pacific.

“New Zealand continues to build on its leadership with the Convention, by working in partnership with disabled people's organisations at home,” Mrs Turia said.

“This leadership also translates to the Pacific where we have worked for a long time to share the knowledge and experience we have gained with our Pacific neighbours and to promote disability inclusive development.

“More than 800,000 people in the Pacific live with a disability and they are among the most vulnerable to social and economic exclusion.

“Our development assistance recognises this and New Zealand is committed to regional efforts to partner with and Disabled Persons Organisations and include people with disability in decisions that affect them.

“New Zealand works closely with Australia and the Pacific Disability Forum to strengthen the capacity of Disabled People’s Organisations across the Pacific and has committed $1.2 million so far to support the Pacific Disability Forum since 2007.

“Through New Zealand’s Aid and Development Agency, NZAID, we are also set to support the Pacific Disabled Persons Organisation Fund which provides grants to disabled persons organisations to hep with support and training. I am pleased to announce the first round of the Fund will be in November and will be managed by the Pacific Disability Forum.”

The Minister is currently attending the first meeting of Pacific Disability Ministers in Rarotonga, Cook Islands. She returns to New Zealand on 25 October 2009.

ENDS

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