Stakeholders have decried discrimination and exclusion of members of the deaf community and People with Disabilities (PWDs).
Executive Director of Deaf Women Aloud Initiative (DWAI), Mrs. Hellen Beyioku-Alase, said people with hearing or speech loss and other forms of disabilities are human, like anyone else, and would like to be treated without discrimination or the use of insensitive terms when they are being described.
She made this known at a media training organised by DWAI to mark this year’s United Nations (UN) International Week of the Deaf at the weekend in Abuja.
She said: “This workshop will highlight the importance of embracing and recognising deaf culture as well as inclusive service delivery for the deaf community. It also plans to challenge perception of the deaf in Nigeria and promote positive aspect of the deaf through greater accessibility and visibility by the media.”
Martha Aga of the DWAI noted that most news organisations exclude the deaf community in their programmes by not using sign language interpreters. She said: “The deaf community was totally neglected in COVID-19 reportage. So many were unaware of what was going on and fell victim to brutality by security men during the lockdown as they went about their activities ignorantly.”