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Create regional disability task force to bridge the communication gap – Ghana National Association of the Deaf

The Ghana Television cooperation (GTV) on Wednesday the 8th of April engaged the Ghana National Association of the Deaf (GNAD) and the Ghana health service on the challenges they're currently experiencing during the lockdown of some major cities in Ghana due to the global pandemic known as Coronavirus or COVID-19.

The television discussion covered issues related to the pandemic and how the government can collaborate with GNAD to ensure the availability of Sign Language Interpreters at all events and programs especially live televised updates from the Ministry and Presidency to bridge the communication gap.

The representative from GNAD Mr. Robert Sampana stated that the introduction of Sign Language Interpreters from the Ministry of Information came at a later date which led to a gap in communication for persons in the deaf community. He further stated that apart from the Ministry of Information they haven’t seen Government taking action to ensure deaf people have access to information on the pandemic.

"Government should ensure all programs have Sign Language Interpreters. Again the government should Set up a Disability Task Force for each region to work together with the health sector and ensure that PWDs are well informed. The formation of the Task Force should be made up of persons with disabilities themselves and funds from the Government should be allocated to educate deaf members".

The Minister of Information phoned in during the discussion on television to congratulate the panel and GTV for a great move in ensuring inclusiveness and said that the Ministry was open to more discussions and interventions for the Deaf community.

Ghana has closed its air, land and sea borders due to the global pandemic. The country is moving into its third week of locking down three major cities in the country in an effort to halt the spread of the Corona virus. The President has addressed the nation six times so far and has cut the cost of electricity and made water supply free for the next three months.

The President in a recent address to the nation made a statement which has since gone viral and has caught the attention of Heads of States, leadership of the WHO, the Media and the general public.

"We know how to bring the economy back to life. What we do not know is how to bring people back to life" - The President said.

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