Dear YAB Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad,
Prime Minister of Malaysia.

Open Letter – The Proposed Establishment of a Commission for Disability Inclusion and the Enactment of a Disability Discrimination Act for the Enforcement of the Rights for Persons with Disabilities in Malaysia.

We, the people of Malaysia, who are still marginalised and burdened by the poor implementation of various policies related to disability and development in this country, wish to seek for the Review of the Persons with Disabilities Act 2008 ( Act 685) and all other laws relevant to Persons with Disabilities, culminating in the establishment of an independent Commission for Disability Inclusion with enforcement powers, and the enactment of a Disability Discrimination Act.

1. Your leadership is the very driving force needed in transforming this nation forward and in achieving full equal opportunities for Persons with Disabilities in this country that would be fulfilling Vision 2020 and beyond, where the aging society is inevitable.

2. By 2040, combined, the population of persons with disabilities and older persons will make up 34% of the population and many issues need to be addressed immediately in all sectors of housing, public spaces, community facilities, transportation, education, employment, healthcare and other aspects of urban life.

3. The Persons with Disabilities Act 2008 has been proven to be ineffective for the past decade, in not making the crucial changes to happen in upholding the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as stated in the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

4. The proposed Disability Discrimination Act will complement the Persons with Disabilities Act, 2008, and all other relevant laws. This new Act will provide for legal action and punitive measures for non-compliance to this Act and all other relevant laws affecting persons with disabilities, by establishing a Commission for Disability Inclusion under the law that will monitor and ensure the successful implementation of policies and action plans in all areas to uphold the rights of persons with disabilities in Malaysia.

5. The new Act and the Commission should be within and under the purview of the respected Prime Minister’s Department and be answerable directly to the Prime Minister in order to integrate all the policies and laws across all Ministries that are associated with disability including accessibility and universal design.

Thank you very much.