“For many years, MDULS has been actively participating in all projects of partner organizations with the aim to improve the accessibility policies of public institutions, especially at the local level, and we additionally encourage all cities and municipalities in Serbia to develop their local policies in all spheres of protection of rights of persons with disabilities. Even though it is not a line ministry, MDULS always and at every point takes care of the interests of those groups of citizens who require additional support from society,” the State Secretary of the Ministry of Public Administration and Local Self-Government, Čedomir Rakić, has said at the 28th International Conference of the Regional Association of the Blind of the Balkans.

He has pointed out that the Balkan Consultative Committee had recognized the results of the work of the Association of the Blind of Serbia, which is hosting the meeting this year, which speaks of the Association’s commitment to improving the position of the blind and visually impaired persons, but also of the state’s commitment to solve in a systemic way, both normatively and in practice, the problems which all vulnerable categories of the population are facing.

Thanking the Association of the Blind of Serbia for continuously representing our country in the best light at the gatherings of this kind, Rakić has stressed the close and good cooperation of the Association with state bodies, institutions and organizations from the State level, to provincial and local level, with the aim of finding the best and innovative solutions for problems faced by blind and visually impaired persons in our society.

Speaking about the examples of good practice in Serbia, he has recalled the city administration of Šabac, which has hired a young and gifted blind IT expert as a permanent employee in last year.

“This is a real example of how local self-governments become a service for their citizens, which is the goal of the Public Administration Reform in our country, while on the other hand, it is also an example of how people with disabilities are included in that process as equal members of our society. There should be more such examples, and that is why the top of the state is here to enable the legally prescribed rights of persons with disabilities to be put into practice and for these persons to express all their capacities in the right way, free from stigmatization, discrimination and exclusion from the sphere of work and social life,“ Rakić has concluded.

He wished that today’s conference would contribute to the further improvement in the work of the Association of the Blind of Serbia, to continue with the introduction of new and innovative technologies into the lives of the blind and visually impaired, and to remain a leader in the process of their full inclusion in Serbia.

28. The International Conference of the Regional Association of the Blind of the Balkans, hosted by the Association of the Blind of Serbia, is being held today in Belgrade. The conference will, inter alia, discuss the position of blind and visually impaired in member countries of the Balkan Consultative Committee, as well as in Slovenia and Hungary, the issue of education of the visually impaired persons, and a smart glove for blind persons shall also be showcased.