Cyprus Mail

Priority to society’s vulnerable groups granted by law

News law giving priority to vulnerable groups in areas serving the public was approved by the House last week, but there are doubts about how it will be implemented.

A joint proposal submitted by Disy MP Savia Orphanidou and her Diko colleague Christiana Erotokritou was unanimously passed by the House to allow the disabled, those over 75 and other vulnerable groups speedier service in public and private spaces serving the public.

Speaking to the Cyprus Mail, Orphanidou expressed the hope that this legislation, which followed complaints involving vulnerable groups, aims at creating a culture around actions that should be self-evident, so that they become a conscious effort.

“I hope that we won’t need to push for such legislation in the future but we had to do this one, I really wish that at some point it will not be necessary to legislate for obvious human rights,” the Disy MP said.

She added that unfortunately pregnant women are not included in the laws due to disagreement expressed by colleagues in the House, but the service for people with disabilities and the elderly is now institutionalised.

Chairman of the paraplegics’ association Demetris Lambrianides said the laws are a step in the right direction, noting that the right of accessibility and full participation are amongst the EU’s top priorities.

But he added, it remains to be seen how it will be implemented, as there are many laws on social issues that are still not implemented. He further pointed out that such laws have to be accompanied by other measures that would ensure access to all aspects of society on an equal basis.

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