Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday asked everyone in society to remain alert so that the persons with autism are not neglected any more.
“Let them [autistic persons] get their appropriate positions in our society…they’re our children, brothers, sisters and relatives, you must keep that in mind,” she said.
The Prime Minister said this while addressing an event marking the 12th World Autism Awareness Day with the theme ‘Assistive Technologies, Active Participation’ at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC).
She also asked everyone in society to be more sympathetic and responsible to autistic persons so that they could lead a beautiful life.
Sheikh Hasina said autistic persons or physically-challenged ones are not the burden on society. “We don’t want them to be the burden on society, don’t treat them as burden, there’re talents in them, they aren’t the burden on us,” she said.
Hasina mentioned that the autistic or physically-challenged persons have their rights and all, especially the non-disabled ones, have to protect their rights properly.
The Prime Minister put emphasis on creating public awareness in society in this regard.
She urged the affluent section of society, including businessmen and industrialists, to come forward to help the autistic and physically-challenged persons of society. “If you arrange jobs for them, their lives will be meaningful.”
She said the government has enacted two laws — “Disability Rights and Protection Act-2013” and “Neuro Developmental Disabled Protection Trust Act-2013”. Necessary rules have also been formulated in regard to those acts.
The PM said a “Neuro Developmental Disability Protection Trust” has also been formed in 2014 under the auspices of those acts.
She also said the government has set up 50-seat Nursing Center in Brahmonbaria for girls while 50-seat one in Bogura for boys those who are orphans and have no guardians.
“We’ve a plan to set up this type of shelter in phases in all eight divisions and in all districts, if possible, ” she said.
Hasina also requested the affluent section of people to donate money to the Trust and Nursing Centres to ensure a better life for the autistic people.
She said the government has provided 10 lakh physically-challenged people with a monthly allowance of Tk 700, while 90,000 lower-income disabled students with a monthly education stipend of Tk 700 to Tk 1200.
“We’ve a plan to give the monthly allowance to all the physically-challenged persons in the next budget,” she added.
Minister for Social Welfare Ministry Nuruzzaman Ahmed MP, Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque, Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Social Welfare Ministry Rashed Khan Menon, senior secretary of the Social Welfare Ministry Zuena Aziz also spoke at the programme.
Earlier, the Prime Minister distributed awards among successful autistic persons and those made contributors to autism awareness programmes and organisations in autism awareness programmes.unb