Egerton University is committed to ensuring that all students and staff are treated equitably. The University Policy on Disability provides a framework for identifying and removing any structural, organizational, physical, and attitudinal barriers which exist for persons with disabilities using our facilities. This will assist them to exploit as fully as possible all educational, employment, social and leisure opportunities within the various University campuses. The goal is to ensure that the university practices and facilities are not intentionally or unintentionally discriminatory, or present unnecessary barriers to students and staff with disabilities.
Disability mainstreaming activities are coordinated by The Disability Mainstreaming Committee, headed by Dr. Susan Mwaniki-Gitau. The committee also runs the Disability Resource Centre, located in the Faculty of Education and Community Studies (FEDCOS) building, room ED017.
A University environment which is barrier free, supportive and inclusive of, Persons with Disabilities.
To provide an enabling environment where Persons with Disabilities can take advantage of different opportunities, to exploit their full potential.
a) To develop best practices and procedures which encourage inclusion, and support of, Persons with Disabilities.
b) To provide a social and physical environment that is barrier free to Persons with Disabilities.
c) Facilitate acquisition of materials, equipment and resources for use by Persons with Disabilities
The University Policy on Disability is guided by the University core values which are:
- Passion for excellence
- Devotion to duty
- Transparency and accountability
- Social fairness and professionalism
In addition, the following principles guide the policy:
- Promotion and protection of human rights
- Regard to the dignity of all human beings
SOME HIGHLIGHTS OF THE UNIVERSITY POLICY ON DISABILITY
· All students and staff are expected to treat students, staff and visitors with disabilities with the same dignity and respect as their non-disabled counterparts. Any form of harassment of a person with a disability on account of their impairment is unacceptable behaviour and is unlawful under the terms of the Persons with Disability Act (GOK, 2003).
· Effective and accessible communications are a key requirement for both staff and students with disabilities. Application forms, instruction booklets, handbooks, tests and examinations etc., can be modified on request.
· On application, students with special needs will be identified and an offer will be made to qualified applicants, unless:
o They have a condition that poses a health and safety risk to the student, e.g. some laboratory settings may be too risky for people with some types of disability.
o There is need for specially adapted accommodation that the University cannot guarantee.
o Despite making all reasonable adjustment, some areas may still be inaccessible or present difficulties for use by people with certain disabilities.
· Students who have been admitted will not be required to queue during the registration process, and will be assisted to register as quickly as possible.
· The Registrar (Academic Affairs) will provide transport and somebody to assist students with disabilities to register and escort them to their rooms.
· Disability awareness will be included in the general student orientation programme
· The University will provide transport within the campus for students with disabilities who need assistance. This will be for attending classes, going for meals, to the library etc, as per arrangements made through the Directorate of Students’ Welfare and the transport officer.
· The University will make reasonable adjustments to improve physical access to the majority of University areas such as the library, students’ mess, Health unit, administration block and a majority of the lecture halls. Appropriate furniture such as low tables and soft chairs will be provided in the lecture halls, library, the mess, and other areas.
· The University will make reasonable adjustments to the workplace and to employment arrangements to ensure that a PWD is not at any disadvantage when compared to a non-disabled person.
· The University is committed to making buildings and sites accessible, where this is reasonably possible, although it is recognised that there may be difficulties with some established University buildings and external environs.
PRIORITY SERVICE FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITY
The following are the requirements for Disability Mainstreaming in service provision:
· Persons with disability (PWDs) are not expected to queue on any service line, but should be served immediately.
· PWDs should be allowed to sit as they are being served.
· In areas where a PWD is expected to carry some items eg in a cafeteria, the service person should assist the PWD to carry the items.
· Transport within the University will be provided for students with disability who may need assistance moving around. Please link any students identified to the Transport Officer.
· Incase of emergency, pay particular attention to evacuation of PWDs.
· Always ensure there are resources and facilities reserved for use by PWDs, eg computers, seats and hostel rooms
· At all times, PWDs should be treated with dignity and respect by both students and staff.
MEMBERS OF THE DISABILITY MAINSTREAMING COMMITTEE: 2013-2016
1. Dr. Susan M. Gitau ACDS
2. Ms. Tabitha Ngunjiri Human resource
3. Ms. Philomena Mwaniki Library
4. Mr. Johana Nyanjong Economics
5. Mr. Mutire Amayoti Medical
6. Mr. Wekesa Talia Dean of Student office
7. Mr. Eliud Mwendwa Halls
8. Ms. Amina Kemei Procurement
9. Eric Odhiambo Students’ representative