Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki: The effect of the Accessibility Plus Programme is removing barriers

We want to systematically improve the lives of people with various disabilities year on year so that the whole society is integrated. We have already reserved PLN 23 billion for the Accessibility Plus Programme. People with disabilities must receive help in overcoming barriers, said Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki during the inauguration of the Accessibility Plus 2018-2025 Programme at the Copernicus Science Centre.

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Photo: W. Kompała / Chancellery of the Prime Minister

People with disabilities want to live, work, pay taxes with dignity – be part of our society in all possible dimensions. We owe them help, support, removing all barriers, said the head of the government.

Help in overcoming barriers

The planned effect of the inaugurated Accessibility Plus Programme is removing obstacles and barriers that impede the daily functioning of people with disabilities. It is also intended to facilitate movement in the public space, including for seniors and women with children. The Prime Minister remarked that things which for some may be a convenience, for people with disabilities may be a big challenge, and their liquidation – a breakthrough.

Sometimes even going up the stairs and eliminating these barriers is the way to freedom, rehabilitation, going to the swimming pool, going to the cinema or going for a walk. And we experience such cases more and more often. We want to act for the good of the whole society and the good of these people, said the Prime Minister. As he noted, We will do everything possible, through legislative and regulatory changes, interministerial cooperation and cooperation between the government and local governments, as well as through the involvement of direct budgetary and EU funds and funds from various types of programmes.

We are considering introducing a new function – an assistant for a disabled person. It will be a person who is to help and be available in different circumstances and in various disabilities,” he explained. The assistant will have a task "to increase the space of freedom for people with disabilities.

The Prime Minister mentioned that the work on the Accessibility Plus Programme that was inaugurated today began a few months ago, and non-governmental organizations and local governments took part in its development.

We are making up for the negligence of our predecessors

The Prime Minister admitted that the government realizes how many needs are still unmet in the case of disabled persons.

Every week, together with Elżbieta Rafalska, the Minister of Family, Work and Social Policy, we’re discussing this subject. In social life, we are making up for negligence caused by the rule of predecessors. These are years of negligence that cannot be caught up quickly – said the head of the government.

As he noted, during one year under the rule of Law and Justice, in 2017 the government raised the social pension by almost PLN 100 while during the four years rule of our predecessors, the increase was only PLN 68. He also reminded that Poland is one of few EU countries in which there are no unified standards concerning public space planning that would allow the whole society to benefit from the elements of the public infrastructure.

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki underlined that it is a significant commitment that disabled people should be able to function normally in Polish society. We want to systematically improve their lives year on year so that the whole society is integrated and we can say that there is one Poland.

During the inauguration of the Accessibility Plus Programme Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki signed a Partnership for Accessibility declaration which constitutes a commitment to cooperate for implementation of the programme assumptions. The declaration was signed by the representatives of the government, the local government, non-governmental organisations, entrepreneurs and other entities.

Progamme Accessibility Plus

Programme Accessibility Plus is one of the five priority actions of the government of Mateusz Morawiecki. The programme is intended to enhance the quality of life and ensure life independence for all citizens, including elderly people and persons with permanent or temporal limitations. This aim is to be supported by the improvement of accessibility of the public space, products and services in the scope of architecture, information and communication. It requires the engagement not only of the government, but also of local authorities, civil society organisations and citizens. The beneficiaries of the programme will be i.a. persons with disabilities and elderly people. The government will allocate over PLN 23 billions for the implementation of the programme in the years 2018–2025.

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