On Monday 11/3/2019, under the patronage of HE Prime Minister Dr. Omar Al Razzaz, the Ministry of Public Works and Housing and the Higher Council for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (HCD) launched "The National Plan for Rectifying Existing Buildings and Public Facilities 2019-2029" in Jordan. This marks a huge step and turning point in the fight for accessibility in Jordan. This new plan to improve accessibility in Jordan comes in compliance with the provisions of the Law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities No. 20 for the Year 2017, which obliges the relevant executive authorities to develop a 10-year national plan that includes solutions and alternatives for existing public buildings and facilities, which in the course of 10 years will be made accessible for persons with disabilities and adapted to their requirements for access to services independently and on an equal basis with others.
The main authorities to be involved in the implementation of this plan includes:
- Ministry of Public Works and Housing
- Greater Amman Municipality
- Higher Council for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- Ministry of Education
- Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities
- Ministry of Health
- Ministry of Transportation
- Ministry of Municipal Affairs
The over all objective of the plan is to render accessible at least 60% of facilities and public buildings, which provide services to the public by 2029, by applying the provisions of the Building Code Requirements for People with Disabilities and/or finding appropriate alternatives as necessary. The plan also identifies 4 pilot areas that were chosen by a group of experts that target different sectors in various cities to be made model accessible spaces that will be later replicated across the country. These areas are:
- Abdali Area, Amman
- Marine Park of Aqaba
- Yarmouk University Street, Irbid
- Touristic Street in Petra & Petra Archaeological Site
It is important to note that this plan not only addresses the needs of people with physical disabilities, but it also priorities the accessibility needs of people with visual and hearing disabilities. By improving accessibility for people of all abilities in Jordan, we will be able to improve people with disabilities’ access to education, employment, healthcare and more, which in turn will allow people with disabilities to become equal and contributing members of our society.
For more information on the plan, click here.