A woman plays with her children at a makeshift shelter in Ciracas, East Jakarta, last month. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro).

Vulnerable Groups Won't Be Left Behind in New Normal: Gov't

BY :DIANA MARISKA

JUNE 16, 2020

Jakarta. The Administrative and Bureaucracy Reforms Ministry has called on all government institutions to provide extra assistance to vulnerable groups, especially disabled people, during the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Diah Natalisa, the ministry's public service deputy, said accurate information regarding Covid-19 might not penetrate all layers of social groups in Indonesia, including disabled people, due to a lack of supporting infrastructure.

She called on all government institutions to provide more facilities for vulnerable groups as the government continues with its push to transition to a new normal.

"All government institutions must provide facilities and infrastructure for vulnerable groups after conducting a public service evaluation," Diah said on Monday.

She mentioned the lack of available information in braille and sign language as one of the contributing factors why many blind people cannot get comprehensive information on Covid-19.

The ministry official also said that public transportation infrastructure in Indonesia is still not disabled-friendly, which makes it doubly difficult for disabled people to access health care.

Diah said the government must improve safety on public transportation to protect vulnerable groups, especially pregnant women and the elderly.

The official singled out the National Police at the district and city level as the single institution able to spend more of its budget to improve public infrastructure for vulnerable groups.

She said guiding blocks and special lanes and entrances for wheelchairs should be installed at all government offices. 

The University of Indonesia's Child Protection and Wellbeing Center (Puskapa) had earlier called on the government to pay more attention to the plight of vulnerable groups during the coronavirus pandemic.

Puskapa pleaded for the government to broaden the definition of vulnerable groups in Indonesia and to issue policies tailored to help them.

"The pandemic has brought out new social and economic problems. The government needs to broaden their definition of vulnerability and issue more inclusive policies," Puskapa's director, Santi Kusumaningrum, said last month.

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