Saturday March 26, 2011
New by-laws to be drafted to prevent abuse of facilities meant for the disabled
By TEH ENG HOCK
Selangor executive councillor Ronnie Liu said the new by-law would be drafted for the 12 local authorities in the state to prevent people from using facilities designated for the disabled.
“The summons should also be extended to places such as shopping malls, where the toilets for the disabled are being used as store rooms,” he said at a press conference to announce the setting up of technical committees on facilities for the disabled at state and local council levels.
Liu was surprised when Malay Disabled Society representative Suhairi Abdullah told him that while it was good to have more facilities for the disabled, it was pointless if there was no enforcement.
“There are all these facilities but people are using it.
“I live in Ampang and many times I have complained to council officers or the police about people parking in the bays for the disabled but they say they cannot issue a summons,” said Suhairi.
Liu immediately responded that something had to be done and said it would take at least three months to pass the new by-law empowering the local authorities to issue summonses.
He said workshops would have to be held to determine the mechanism and the amount for the fine, before it could be forwarded to the state executive council for approval.
“We can have a uniformed by-law for the whole state. The whole process will take at least three months.
“It is only March now, so we have to get it done by this year,” he added.
On the setting up of technical committees for the disabled, Liu said this would ensure the disabled community had a say in the planning and development of disabled-friendly facilities.
“It is not that a person is not sensitive to the needs of the disabled but sometimes it does not cross his mind.
“And it is then too late when the structure is up and found to be not suitable for the disabled,” he said.
Liu said the committees would have representatives from the disabled community.
The committees at the local authority-level will be set up one at a time, with all councils to have them by the year-end.
At the moment, only the Petaling Jaya City Council has a technical committee on disabled facilities.