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ACCESSIBILITY TO BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND INFORMATION

Accessibility to the built environment and information is a basic human right that is the focus of attention particularly for persons with disabilities. According to the World Health Organization, there are over 650 million persons with disabilities in the world. However, the numbers are even higher if we look more broadly and add up all those who do not have disabilities, but in some cases or over a certain period of their lives find themselves in a position where they are functionally impaired in one way or another. Everyone can experience this at some point in their lives, whether being temporarily or permanently impaired, or if the normal functioning of a body part is obstructed. Thus, this important issue requires clear guidance in providing universal human rights and the legal provision of equal opportunities, equal treatment and prevention of discrimination experienced by persons with disabilities in different areas of life.

Access to the built environment and information technologies is provided to persons with disabilities through the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (link: https://www.uradni-list.si/glasilo-uradni-list-rs/vsebina/86045 ). When planning accessibility to the built environment, it is essential to comply with all key regulations, including the most important one: the Equalisation of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities Act (link:  www.pisrs.si/Pis.web/pregledPredpisa?id=ZAKO4342) and national policies and action programmes concerning the Strategy of Accessible Slovenia (National guidelines for improving accessibility to the built environment, information and communications for persons with disabilities).

As persons with disabilities still constantly face barriers to education, training, participation in cultural and leisure, activities and the exercise of their basic right to mobility, it is essential not only to strictly comply to, but also to enforce laws and measures in practice. Only then will persons with disabilities get equal opportunities for all.

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Persons with disabilities in Slovenia and their employment

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In Slovenia, the status of a person with disabilities is determined by several acts. According to the Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment of Persons with Disabilities Act (VREPDA) (link:  http://pisrs.si/Pis.web/pregledPredpisa?id=ZAKO3841), a person with disabilities is a person who has acquired the status of a person with disabilities in accordance with VREPDA or other regulations, and a person in relation to whom a competent authority has, by means of a decision, determined the permanent consequences of physical or mental impairments or illness and whose prospects of securing, retaining and advancing in employment are substantially reduced.

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Why employ a person with disabilities?

With the right support, persons with disabilities can be just as efficient and good workers as others if the job requirements match their abilities. Furthermore, the employer can balance any potential shortfall in productivity or cover additional costs associated with employment through incentives provided for by employment measures for persons with disabilities.

 

What incentives are offered to employers who employ persons with disabilities?

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Many measures and programmes are implemented at the national level to promote the employment of persons with disabilities and to provide benefits to employers. The statutory vocational rehabilitation process enables the employer to meet, test and train persons with disabilities for a specific job, while providing access to the professional support of rehabilitation team members.

The employer may use the following incentives when employing a person with disabilities:

The award goes to the employer who exceeds the quota and to the employer who is not liable for the quota but has disabled employees and amounts to 20% of the minimum wage for each disabled person above the prescribed quota. The bonus do not apply for budget users.

Exemption from the payment of pension and disability insurance contributions for each disabled employee over quota may be granted to an employer in excess of the quota and to an employer who is not a quota taxpayer but has disabled employees. The exemption does not belong to budget users.

The employer may, on the basis of an individualized adjustment plan justifies the adjustment of the workplace or the adjusted means of work, request payment of an appropriate adjustment of the workplace and the means of work.

The wage subsidy for a disabled person belongs to a disabled person who achieves lower disability-related work outcomes and is employed in a protected work place, in a supportive employment or in a disability enterprise. In support employment, the subsidy can be up to 30% of the minimum wage.

Supportive employment in a normal work environment is provided through professional and technical assistance to the disabled person, the employer and the work environment.

A person with disabilities in supportive employment may be provided with professional and technical support in terms of his / her disability in the induction process, in the workplace and in the integration into the work environment, in accordance with the individual plan. The employer and the work environment are provided with professional support through information and counseling in supportive employment.

Payment for the costs of support services is up to 30 hours per month belongs to the employer in the normal working environment.

The Annual Employers Good Practice Award for Employment of Persons with Disabilities is a special form of social recognition to employers for good practice in the field of employment of persons with disabilities, through which recipients are entitled to use the promotional logo.

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Understanding the quota system for employment of persons with disabilities

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Compliance with the quota system for employment of persons with disabilities is an obligation of employers to employ the mandatory number of persons with disabilities, ranging from 2 to 6 percent of employees. Quota must be observed by all employers, employing more than 20 workers. In the event that such an employer fails to employ the required number of persons with disabilities, they must pay a monthly contribution in the amount of 70% of the minimum wage into the Disability Fund, in order to stimulate employment of persons with disabilities, or alternatively reach the quota by concluding a business cooperation agreement with a sheltered workshop or an employment centre to provide work for employees with disabilities.

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MEDIA CAMPAIGN

Our media campaign focuses on the main slogan ACCESSIBILITY 4ALL = RESPECT 4ALL, while stressing relevant messages:

  • Contemporary communities do not discriminate. Is yours in step with time?
  • We are changing our attitudes towards employing people with disabilities.
  • By employing a person with disabilities, we are socially responsible.
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