Disability rights orgainizations have raised concerns about a recent circular from the Commissionerate for the Welfare of Persons with Disabilities, Tamil Nadu, India, asking all employees working with persons with disabilities to get a police verification certificate.
The circular, issued on January 13, states that all persons of NGOs engaged in working with persons with disabilities such as education, protection training, and rehabilitation should procure a police verification certificate stating that there are no cases against them, reported The Hindu.
The original certificate should then be submitted to the organisation they are working with, and a copy should be handed over to the district’s disability welfare officer.
The Confederation of Associations for persons with mental disabilities has asked the Tamil Nadu government to withdraw this circular.
“Around 300 Special Establishments have been functioning for the past twenty years with financial support and full Government recognition. Some of our members have been serving the most marginalized of all the differently abled for four decades,” M. Ravichandran, General Secretary of the association said in a statement.
He further said that while the Confederation demanded stringent action against any employee of a special school or facility who has indulged in unlawful activity, it is humiliating to paint the whole community of service providers as downright criminals or suspects.
“While the government can insist on organisations as a whole to undergo such verification, it is not feasible for all employees to procure a verification certificate. This order makes it seem like all employees have a criminal background,” said S. Namburajan, State General Secretary, TARATDAC.