THE STAR
MONDAY, APRIL 13, 1992

FACTORIES TAKING IN THE DISABLED

IPOH: Most factories in Perak have shown keen interest in employing disabled persons as production operators.

S. Saraspathy, a trainer of the Idris Shah Foundation for the Disabled, said the foundation had placed 15 disabled people between 22 and 35 years of age in furniture, plastic and glove factories here.

"Their performances are found not to be lacking in comparison to their co-workers," she said.

Saraspathy said follow-ups by the foundation showed that the disabled were adapting well to their working environment and employers were pleased with them.

She said an electronics factory had offered a contract to the foundation. A sheltered workshop will be set up in June to accommodate 50 disabled workers.

"The factories have recognised the abilities of our workers who can contribute positively and productively to society," she said.

"This is a good sign for the disabled as they can be taught to earn their own bread."

Saraspathy added this was in line with the foundation's community-based rehabilitation plan, which helped the disabled fit into society.

She said the problem faced by the foundation right now was in choosing suitable candidates for the factory jobs.

"We want to make sure that out disabled candidates meet the standard of the employers before sending them out," she said.

The disabled will receive the same pay and benefits as any other worker, she added.

Saraspathy hoped that the establishment of the foundation's centre in Kampung Bercham in August would help centralise its projects. A workshop may be set up to train the disabled for employment.

"With the setting up of the 8ha centre, more space will be available for us to house the disabled for training and special projects," she said.

Currently, the foundation has five daycare centres all over the state to train physically disabled children.