- Assented to on 10 July 2012
- Commenced on 1 August 2013
- [This is the version of this document at 31 December 2014.]
- [Note: This version of the Act was revised and consolidated in the Fifth Revised Edition of the Laws of Malawi (L.R.O. 1/2018), by the Solicitor General and Secretary for Justice under the authority of the Revision of the Laws Act.]
Part I – Preliminary
1. Short titleThis Act may be cited as the Disability Act.
2. InterpretationIn this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—“accessibility” understood as universal design, means the design of products, programmes, the environment and services to be used by all persons to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation and specialized design;“assistive devices” means appropriate aids, appliances, technologies or other support systems that facilitate the better functioning of persons with disabilities;“disability” means a long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairment, which, in interaction with various barriers, may hinder the full and effective participation in society of a person on equal basis with other persons;“disability mainstreaming” means a strategy for making the needs, concerns and experiences of persons with disabilities an integral dimension of the design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of policies and programmes in the political, economic and societal spheres to ensure that persons with disabilities benefit equally;“Disability Trust Fund” means a fund to be established by the Minister pursuant to section 28;“discrimination” means a distinction, exclusion or restriction on the basis of disability, which has the purpose or effect of impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, of any human rights or fundamental freedoms, in the political, economic, social, cultural, civil or other field;“equalization of opportunities” means a process through which the various systems of society and the environment, including services, activities, information and documentation, are made available and accessible to persons with disabilities;“impairment” means any loss or limitation of psychological, physiological or anatomical structure or function;“inclusive education” means a process of addressing and responding to the diversity of needs of all learners through increasing participation in learning, cultures and communities and reducing exclusion from and within education;“institution” means any building or other premises in which an organization carries on work for the empowerment of persons with disabilities, and includes premises where persons with disabilities live and are supported by such organization;“National Advisory and Coordinating Committee on Disability Issues (NACCODI)” means a Committee to be established by the Minister pursuant to section 5 (2);“reasonable accommodation” means necessary and appropriate modifications and adjustments that ensure that persons with disabilities enjoy or exercise all human rights and fundamental freedoms on equal basis with other persons, without imposing disproportionate or undue burden on the other persons; and“rehabilitation” means a goal-oriented process aimed at enabling a person with a disability to reach an optimum mental, physical or social functional level, by providing such person with tools to improve his life.
Part II – Adoption of policies and legislation
3. Adoption of policies and legislation on equalization of opportunities
Part III – Administration
4. Responsibilities of the MinisterThe Minister shall be responsible for the proper administration of this Act, including—
5. Powers of the Minister
Part IV – Rights of persons with disabilities
6. Health care services
7. Prohibition of discrimination in health care and rehabilitation services
8. AccessibilityThe Government shall take appropriate measures to ensure that persons with disabilities have access to the physical environment, transportation, information and communications, including information and communication technologies and systems, and other facilities and services available or provided to the public by—
9. Prohibition of discrimination in accessing premises and the provision of services or amenities
10. Education and trainingThe Government shall recognize the rights of persons with disabilities to education on the basis of equal opportunity, and ensure an inclusive education system and lifelong learning by—
11. Prohibition of discrimination in education or training institutions
12. Work and employment
13. Prohibition of discrimination in work and employment
14. Social protection
15. Prohibition of discrimination in social services
16. Right of association and representationEvery person with a disability shall have the right to—
17. Participation in political and public lifeThe Government shall, through deliberate policies and measures, guarantee participation in political and public life by persons with disabilities, by—
18. Prohibition of discrimination in political and public life
19. Cultural and sporting activities, and recreational services
20. Prohibition of discrimination in cultural and sporting activities, and recreational services
21. HousingThe Government shall, in its National Housing Programmes, take into account the needs of persons with disabilities by—
22. Prohibition of discrimination in housing
23. Economic empowermentThe Government shall recognize the importance of empowering persons with disabilities economically, without any form of discrimination, and shall ensure that the persons with disabilities are able to access loans and credit facilities for purposes of carrying out income generating activities.
24. Prohibition of disempowerment
25. Right to information and communication technologiesA person with disability shall have the right to access information and communication technologies at an affordable cost.
26. Research and information and communication technologies
27. Prohibition of participation in research without consent
Part V – Disability Trust Fund
28. Disability Trust FundThe Minister shall establish a trust fund to be known as the Disability Trust Fund which shall consist of such monies as may be given to the Fund by way of donations, contributions or grants.
29. Purpose of the FundThe purpose of the Disability Trust Fund shall be to support the implementation of disability programmes and services.
Part VI – Miscellaneous provisions
30. Investigations by the MinisterThe Minister shall investigate any violation of this Act, and shall periodically review compliance with this Act by all the relevant authorities or institutions.
31. Civil remedies
32. Administrative penalties
History of this document
01 August 2013
10 July 2012