Cyprus Mail

People with non visible disabilities ‘falling through the cracks’

MPs were on Tuesday shown a presentation on non-visible disabilities, where they heard that many people are not receiving the support needed and many fall through the cracks.

Marina Andreou, a student who spoke at parliament, told lawmakers that major improvements are needed so that those with such ailments are treated fairly and enjoy equal treatment – and access – to services.

It was explained that non-visible disabilities include conditions such as cancer, diabetes, autoimmune issues and other, often chronic, health problems.

Andreou gave the example of schools, where issues are often not identified fast enough; leading to students not being able to follow lessons properly. She added that even when the issues are identified there are often shortcomings in dealing with them.

It was further stated that those who are not visibly disabled often have a hard time being declared disabled by medical councils.

That leads to many other knock-on effects, such as difficulties in applying for benefits or receiving caregiver support.

Head of the labour committee Andros Kafkalias conceded that much work remains in ensuring that those affected receive the support required.

He noted that Cyprus must implement EU and other international conventions which aim to provide the assistance needed, such as ensuring equal access to education and the judicial system.


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