Press Release

Dr. Jimmy Devins, T.D. Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children with responsibility for Disabilities and Mental Health addressed the PwDI Seminar on ‘E-technology as a means of enhancing opportunities in employment, training and education for people with disabilities’

Dr. Jimmy Devins, T.D. Minister of State at the of Health and Children with responsibility for Disabilities and Mental Health addressed a seminar today (14th September, 2007) organised by PwDI (People with Disabilities Ireland) as part of the organisation’s hosting of the FIMITIC International Delegates Conference.

The Minister was highlighting the potential of ‘E-technology as a means of enhancing opportunities in employment, training and education for people with disabilities’.

The Minister said that E-technology, while impacting on everyone, ‘’has for people with a disability changed many aspects of daily living from the impossible to the possible”. ‘’For a person with a disability, for whom the traditional classroom-based learning may have presented difficulties, E-learning as a development of distance learning, now allows them to participate in training at a time, place and at a pace to suit their needs‘, the Minister said.

“The commitment of FAS to explore web-enabled learning for people with a disability has been strengthened in the Sectoral Plan of the Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment under the Disability Act 2005. FÁS’ ‘Vocational Training Strategy for Disabled People’, as laid out in the Sectoral Plan, commits to the development of innovative and flexible means of training design and delivery for people with a disability in mainline provision. Web-based technologies have much potential for strengthening access to mainstream provision” the Minister said.

“Grasping the opportunities available in the Information Technology sector is a step in the right direction towards redressing the current unfavourable level of employment among people with a disability’’ the Minister said. He urged employers everywhere to recognise, and make every effort to tap into, the talent represented by people with a disability when seeking to complement their staff, reminding employers that FAS provide an extensive range of supports to encourage the employment of people with a disability, including a generous Wage Subsidy Scheme.