China continuously improves mechanisms for protection of rights, interests of persons with disabilities

An employee of an innovation and entrepreneurship center for persons with disabilities in Xuanhua District, Zhangjiakou, North China's Hebei Province sells commodities on a livestream show with sign language, Dec. 3, 2020. (Photo by Chen Xiaodong/People's Daily Online)

Persons with disabilities are equal members of humanity, and the cause of persons with disabilities is a systematic social undertaking. The Law of the People’s Republic of China on the Protection of Persons with Disabilities, enacted on May 15, 1991, is the first specialized law in China that comprehensively protects the rights and interests of persons with disabilities. Over the past three decades since the enacting of the law, China has continuously improved the mechanisms for the protection of rights and interests of persons with disabilities.

So far, the protection of rights and interests of persons with disabilities has been written in 80 of all laws approved by the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee, and 70 of all administrative laws and regulations approved by the State Council. Nearly 30 terms in the Civil Code are directly related to the protection of the rights and interests of persons with disabilities. During the past five years, legal assistance for persons with disabilities has been constantly enhanced. A total of 2,600 organizations of legal assistance coordination and 2,318 legal aid centers were established across the country for this group during the period.

By constantly improving people’s livelihood, China is bringing more assistance to the development of the cause of persons with disabilities and guaranteeing their rights and interests. Zhang Shundong and Li Guoxiu are a couple that have only one hand and one pair of feet and used to live in poverty. Thanks to the minimum living allowance, employment subsidies, and the government’s supporting policies for persons with disabilities, they finally found a path leading to prosperity. Apart from shaking off poverty themselves, they are also helping farmers sell farm produce on e-commerce platforms. Last year, they were awarded an honorary title for their contributions to the poverty alleviation cause. During the past five years, China has removed over seven million persons with disabilities from the poverty list. It is doing as much as possible to advance the cause of persons with disabilities, and overcoming its deficiencies in a targeted manner, so as to help the group better fit into the society and share the outcomes of economic and social development.

According to China’s Outline of the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) for National Economic and Social Development and the Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035, the country will work to better guarantee the basic rights and interests of women, minors and persons with disabilities, and improve the capability of persons with disabilities to support and develop themselves. It is believed that new achievements will be made by China in its cause of persons with disabilities.

(Zhang Zidong is from China Administration of Sport for Persons with Disabilities.)