Badan Latihan dan Hidup Berdikari Malaysia (ILTC) pada 23hb Mac 2016 menyerahkan memorandum kepada ahli-ahli parlimen mendesak supaya golongan orang kurang upaya (OKU) dikecualikan daripada cukai barangan dan perkhidmatan (GST).

Disabled Members Protest

Disabled Members Protest
Disabled Members Protest at JPJ Wangsa Maju

ILTC Malaysia members staged a protest outside JPJ Wangsamaju KL.

ILTC Malaysia members staged a protest outside JPJ Wangsamaju KL.
Disabled group’s protest disabled drivers required to produce doc's medical report.

Friday, 29 April 2011

Spare them a thought

Thursday April 28, 2011

Spare them a thought

People living with disabilities need all the support that they can get.

WHEN Gurdial Singh woke up one morning and found blood on his blanket, he realised that something was wrong. Gurdial had been suffering from high fever for three days.

His wife rushed him to a nearby government hospital where they found that Gurdial – a diabetic – had been harbouring a nasty blister on his left toe. He was not aware of the bleeding blister because he had no sensation in that area. More bad news was in store: Gurdial was advised to have his leg amputated.

“My only concern at that time was to stay alive,” recalled Gurdial, 82.

“The five doctors who treated me were very professional,” he added. “They made it clear why amputation was the only way out for me.”

His doctors gave him a detailed description of the process – right up until when he would be fitted with a prosthetic leg to enable him to walk again. Looking back, he said there were several key factors which helped him to make the right decision and accept his new life as an amputee.

Gurdial is very thankful for the support given by his wife.

“She has always been there for me right from day one. I truly appreciate her for it. We made the decision for the amputation together. My wife was with me throughout the ordeal as I struggled to adjust to my new life.

“I am also grateful to my in-laws for their moral support. They even helped with the arrangements to have the amputated limb (from the knee below) cremated in a temple whilst I was still in hospital.”

Gurdial pointed out that his healthcare professionals also played a big role in his recovery. “The doctors told me everything – from what would happen immediately after the surgery to how long it would take before an artificial limb would be given to me. These insights were invaluable to my rehabilitation.”

A wheelchair donation from a state assemblyman before Gurdial’s prosthesis arrived and the sponsorship of the costs of the limb by the Welfare Department proved to be a most welcome gift during his time of need. However, there were changes in Gurdial’s life after his disability.

“Although most of the people I meet talk to me just like a normal person, the invitations that I used to get for social events like weddings, housewarming parties and even New Year gatherings began to drop since I started using a prosthesis to move around,” said Gurdial. “This is probably because of superstitious beliefs about disabilities.”

Gurdial pointed out that there are people who believe that a pregnant woman should never go near a disabled person in case the unborn child becomes deformed.

“When I started to use an artificial limb, nothing about me changed at all,” he said. “I am the same human being with normal feelings like everyone else. It is important that people remember this.”

Gurdial pointed out a couple of incidents which showed up the ignorance people have towards disabilities.

He visited a Sikh temple in Kuala Lumpur once where he was not allowed into the dining room because of his prosthetic leg. A temple official pointed to a sign on the wall which said: “No Shoes Allowed!”

When he tried to explain that he really had no choice because of his mobility problems, he was told: “A rule is a rule!”

Gurdial had another unpleasant experience when he visited a Sikh temple in Petaling Jaya, Selangor. He managed to get into the dining area but halfway through his meal, he was approached by someone who insisted that he remove his shoes or leave. Gurdial had no choice but to comply.

The person offered to take the food and serve him outside. However, not wanting to be humiliated, Gurdial turned him down.

Gurdial pointed out that temples that practise such policies should be more sensitive to the needs of people with disabilities.

Meanwhile, a check with a committee member from the temple confirmed that they do not practise any form of discrimination against the disabled.

Anyone who experiences such treatment is advised to contact the committee at once.

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