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Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda wants people with disabilities to be added to the list of groups prioritized for COVID-19 vaccination to help them better integrate into the labor market, his social policy advisor said on Tuesday.
Gitanas Nausėda
Gitanas Nausėda
© DELFI / Andrius Ufartas

"Today, we don't have a clear priority for people with disabilities," Irena Segaloviciene told the Ziniu Radijas radio station. "We expect the majority of people with disabilities to be vaccinated in the near future as part of the wider priority group which includes all people with chronic diseases."

The advisor added, however, that people with disabilities should be singled out as a separate priority group because they are at high risk of death from the coronavirus.

The president also calls for sustainable solutions to integrate people with disabilities in the labor market on an equal footing with others, according to Segaloviciene.

"We need a review of active labor market measures designed for people with disabilities to ensure that they are effective and of high quality," the advisor said. "This requires very adequate and targeted funding."

"The president is calling on the government to make these changes and we hope that it will do so in the near future," she added.

Later on Tuesday, Nauseda is meeting, via a video link, with Birute Sabatauskaite, the new equal opportunities ombudsperson, and members of the Commission for the Monitoring of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

The discussion will focus on the rights and well-being of people with disabilities and how they are affected by measures to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as Lithuania's progress in implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the president's office has said.

BNS
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