Why Indonesia’s anti-sexual violence bill important for people with disabilities

Despite many controversies surrounding deliberation on the anti-sexual violence bill in Indonesia’s parliament, people with disabilities welcome the new bill.

Many disability organisations and advocates have demanded the parliament pass the bill as they believe it will be a major policy reform to protect people with disabilities from sexual violence. The law will also guarantee their equal rights with other fellow citizens. They laud the bill as a timely criminal justice response to people with disabilities, including children, suffering from sexual violence.

Current condition
The 2019 report from the National Commission on Violence Against Women showed a gradual increase in sexual violence cases against women with disabilities. It provided data showing the number of women with disabilities suffering from sexual violence had increased from 40 cases in 2015 to 89 cases as of March 2019.

Yogyakarta province, located 500 kilometres from capital Jakarta, recorded the highest number of cases, 47, followed by Jakarta with 17 cases as of March 2019.

This is mostly because Yogyakarta has the most active organisations advocating for legal rights and counselling for people with disabilities. Aside from civil organisations, there is also support from the local government in addressing sexual violence and promoting legal protection to people with disabilities.

Since 2016, there have been two district courts in Yogyakarta offering better legal protection to people with disabilities. They start by providing access for wheelchair users.

It is important to note that the actual number of women and children with disabilities who have been victims of sexual violence is much higher than the reported figures. The commission based the data mentioned above on the report submitted by disabled people organisations and legal aid foundations. Like fellow citizens, people with disabilities are often not aware of their legal rights.

Changes under the new law
The new law, which lists various forms of sexual violence as criminal offences including sexual harassment, sexual exploitation, forced contraception, forced abortion, rape, forced marriage, forced prostitution, sexual slavery and sexual abuse, will soon change this.

The law requires the government to adopt a series of policies to prevent sexual violence. This includes providing legal education to people with disabilities so they can understand their rights and what constitutes sexual violence.

Once passed, the law will better protect people with disabilities, especially women and children, from different forms of sexual violence.

Article 45 of the bill also acknowledges that people with disabilities have equal legal capacity to stand trial or testify as a witness. It also requires legal institutions, including courts, to address the needs of people with disabilities when they are engaged in legal processes.

This starts with providing well-trained staff to assist people with disabilities, including sign-language interpreters. The government can also provide assistive technology such as text-to-speech software to help visually impaired and blind people participate in trial processes.

One of the biggest challenges of women with disabilities when reporting sexual violence is Indonesia’s complex legal system and incompetent authorities. There is simply a lack of understanding among law enforcement agencies about how to meet the needs of people with disabilities.

Due to these challenges, only a few were able to proceed their cases to court. In 2016, only three out of 76 cases went to trial in Yogyakarta.

The bill is in line with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities, which Indonesia ratified in 2011. The convention aims to protect the rights and dignity of people with disabilities. The bill also supports the 2016 National Disability Law.

Remaining debates
The bill has triggered intense public debate, with opposition from Islamic parties led by the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS). They reject it because they believe the bill contradicts Islamic teachings as it promotes same-sex relations and other deviant sexual behaviours and liberal practices. They accuse the bill’s supporters of being influenced by Western values.

They are missing the larger point.

They forget that the bill also promotes and protects the rights of the most marginalised and the most discriminated groups in Indonesian society: women and children with disabilities.

As politicians focus on the inauguration of a new parliament in October, supporters of the bill are concerned the bill might not be passed.

Should lawmakers decide to defer deliberation on the bill, it will raise the possibility that religiously motivated opposition continues to grow as it give them more time to continue with their campaign. This may lead to the defeat of this important law. Let’s hope this will not be the case.

This article has previously been published in The Conversation. It is republished for educational purposes.

Ilustrasi mengenai caption pada video.

Caption on Video for Deaf

The use of video as a medium for learning has multiple roles in these day an age. With one click on a specific link, students can access videos directly from wherever they are. Unfortunately, often the video used is not accompanied by caption, both closed or open caption.

Ironically this is similar to the way some television stations are not adhering to Indonesian 2012 law number 32 on broadcasting and 2016 law number 8 about disability in relation to the right to obtain information for everyone. “Everyone” is defined as the infinite segments of viewers who watch, including those who are hearing impaired (deaf), or have other sensory disabilities with varying levels. If one covers audiences in all segments, then providing caption on each video is what must be done.

In the education sector, the use of video is directly associated with learning material. Since the Directorate General of High Education from the Ministry of Research, Technology and High Education stated that the university campus is inclusive for everyone, the existence of video as a medium of learning to distribute information is also an obligation that universities must follow through. Although in the 2016 Law number 8 it is not stated specifically that a hearing impaired student (deaf) should be provided with a sign language translator in schools or on campuses, this is an intrinsic point covered by the law.

When a sign language translator is not available in the video, then the caption in the text must explain the contents of the audio. In fact, sound effects that is not speech but related contextually to what is visually displayed must also be defined in the caption, such as the sound of wind on a video containing learning materials about meteorology and geophysics. In essence, whatever is still in the form of sound can be captioned in the video.

Closed and Open Caption

Caption is a text that appears on the screen that explains the contents of the video and also describes the voice and sound effect to provide in written form the message. Caption can also be an explanation about the identity of the speaker and an explanation of the voice that has relevance with the contents of the video. Caption synchronizes with the visual performance in the video, so that viewers can listen and read the caption at once. Thus, those with sensory disability both visually or hearing impaired (blindness and deafness) can have equal access to informations on the video.

There are two kinds of caption, which is closed caption and open caption. Open caption can not be disabled, as it is integrated and attached to the video, and it will shrink in size if the video file is compressed to a smaller shape or to another video file extension. While closed caption can be edited according to the needs of the audience. Open caption is listed in the video at the same time when the video is edited while closed caption can be installed after the video is finished processing and ready to be uploaded. The most obvious example of closed caption is the one installed on Youtube with the cc button you can chose (which is the abbreviation for closed caption). On other social media apps like Instagram and IGTV, closed caption is not provided so the video that is published on Instagram or IGTV must use closed caption.

On certain video players, to view closed caption you may needs an additional supporting player, like VLC player or GOM player. On Youtube, closed caption sometimes must be put as the setting preferred or one must not forget to turn on the cc button. On Television, closed caption needs a decoder that can read and display the text of the caption. This decoder is most often installed on the latest version of televisions such as smart Television (Smart-TV).

Installing closed caption on a video player must include how to activate the caption, whether it is through a television screen or other software. That is the reason why a lot of video viewers prefer open caption rather than closed caption. There is an assumption that open caption contains the universal design that carried the Human Rights general convention because it is beneficial not only for those who are hearing impaired (deaf), but also for foreign language audiences and people in a noisy area that does not allow a good projection of sound from the video. Unfortunately, the translation in open caption cannot be done in the same manner as closed caption. In addition to the extra features stored in open caption, there is also a flaw in its usage. Open caption is a direct part of the video, while closed caption is separate to the video format so it is more flexible to be used on various video players and does not shrink in size when the video is compressed.

With the advantages and disadvantages of the open and closed caption, it is important to evaluate the use of one’s video and how far an audience can understand it. For example, on a tutorial video aimed at those who are disabled or at a broad range of audiences or at a noisy conference, open caption might be more useful. However, this consideration must also be measured by how much the caption can be accessed when watched and edited when there is a mistake to be fixed. What is more important than the consideration outlined above is to consider the audience and the message that you want to convey from producing your specific video with either open or closed caption.

Ilustrasi mengenai caption pada video.

Caption di Video untuk Tuli

Penggunaan video sebagai medium pembelajaran memiliki banyak peran dewasa ini. Dengan satu klik pada tautan tertentu, pelajar atau mahasiswa dapat mengakses video langsung dari mana pun mereka berada. Sayangnya, seringkali video yang digunakan tidak disertai dengan caption, baik closed maupun open caption.

Kenyataan tersebut sama ironisnya dengan ketidaktaatan beberapa stasiun televisi yang tidak memenuhi ketentuan Undang-Undang Nomor 32 Tahun 2002 tentang Penyiaran dan Undang-Undang Nomor 8 Tahun 2016 tentang Penyandang Disabilitas yang berkaitan dengan hak untuk memperoleh informasi augmentatif bagi semua orang. “Semua orang” dalam terma ini mengandaikan ketidakterbatasan segmen pemirsa yang menonton, termasuk Tuli, yang bukan Tuli, atau penyandang disabilitas sensorik lainnya dengan berbagai tingkatan. Jika bayangan pemirsa tersebut adalah pada semua segmen, maka menyediakan caption pada setiap video adalah hal yang niscaya.

Di ranah pendidikan, penggunaan video berkenaan langsung dengan penyampaian maateri pembelajaran. Sejak Direktorat Jenderal Pendidikan Tinggi pada Kementerian Riset, Teknologi dan Pendidikan Tinggi mencanangkan kampus inklusif bagi semua orang, keberadaan caption pada video sebagai medium pembelajaran atau persebaran informasi juga menjadi kewajiban. Meski dalam UU Nomor 8 Tahun 2016 tidak tertera secara langsung bahwa mahasiswa atau siswa Tuli harus disediai penerjemah Bahasa Isyarat di sekolah atau di kampus, namun poin pada undang-undang tersebut sudah mengatakan secara intrinsik.

Bilamana penerjemah Bahasa Isyarat tidak tersedia dalam video tersebut, maka caption dalam rupa teks harus menjelaskan isi pembicaraan yang berupa audio. Bahkan, efek suara bukan ujaran yang berkaitan dengan konteks yang tertera secara visual juga harus terjelaskan dalam caption, misalnya suara hembus angin pada video yang berisi materi pembelajaran tentang meteorologi dan geofisika. Sederhananya, apapun yang masih dalam bentuk suara sebisa mungkin ter-caption-kan dalam video.

Closed dan Open Caption

Caption adalah teks yang muncul di layar yang menjelaskan isi video dan juga berfungsi menggantikan peran suara untuk menyampaikan pesan. Caption juga bisa berupa penjelasan tentang identitas pembicara dan penjelasan mengenai suara yang memiliki relevansi dengan isi video. Caption tersinkronisasi dengan apa yang tampil secara visual di video, sehingga penonton dapat mendengarkan dan membaca caption sekaligus. Dengan demikian, penyandang disabilitas sensorik baik tunanetra maupun Tuli dapat mengakses video tersebut.

Ada dua macam caption, yaitu Closed Caption dan Open Caption. Open Caption tidak bisa dihidup-matikan, terintegrasi dan melekat pada video, dan akan ikut mengecil apabila file video dikompres ke bentuk yang lebih kecil atau ekstensi lain. Sedangkan Closed Caption dapat dihidup-matikan sesuai keperluan penonton. Open Caption dicantumkan di video bersamaan dengan ketika video tersebut diedit, sedangkan Closed Caption dapat dipasang setelah video selesai diproses dan siap ditayangkan. Contoh yang paling kentara pada Closed Caption adalah yang dipasang di YouTube pada pilihan CC (yang merupakan singkatan dari Closed Caption itu). Pada aplikasi media sosial lain semisal Instagram dan IGTV, Closed Caption tidak disediakan sehingga video yang diunggap di Instagram atau IGTV harus menggunakan Closed Caption.

Dari segi media pemutar video, Closed Caption membutuhkan pemutar yang mendukung, semisal VLC Player atau GOM Player. Di YouTube, Closed Caption kadang harus disetting terlebih dahulu. Sedangkan pada televisi, Closed Caption membutuhkan decoder yang dapat membaca dan menampilkan teks caption tersebut. Decoder ini kadang sudah terpasang pada televisi masa kini seperti pada televisi cerdas (smart-tv).

Memasang Closed Caption pada video harus menyertakan cara mengaktifkan caption tersebut, baik itu di televisi atau perangkat lunak lainnya. Itulah mengapa banyak pemirsa video yang lebih memilih Open Caption ketimbang Closed Caption. Open Caption mengasumsikan bahwa ia mengandung desain universal yang diusung Konvensi HAM secara umum, karena ia bermanfaat bukan hanya pada Tuli, tapi juga pada pemirsa asing dan orang di tempat yang riuh yang tidak memungkinkan untuk mendengar suara pada video. Sayangnya, penerjemahan pada Open Caption tidak dapat dilakukan sebagaimana pada Closed Caption. Selain keuntungan yang tersimpan dalam Open Caption, ada pula kekurangannya. Open Caption merupakan bagian dari video secara langsung, sedangkan Closed Caption terspisah dari video sehingga lebih fleksibel pada berbagai pemutar video dan tidak mengecil ketika video dikompres.

Dengan kelebihan dan kekurangan pada Open dan Closed Caption ini, penting bagi pemproduksi video untuk mengevaluasi penggunaan video tersebut dan sejauh mana ia dapat dipahami oleh pemirsa. Contohnya, pada sebuah video tutorial yang ditujukan pada penyandang disabilitas atau audiens secara luas atau pada pelaksaan konferensi yang bising, Open Caption mungkin lebih bermanfaat. Meski demikian, pertimbangan tersebut harus juga mengukur seberapa mungkin caption tersebut dapat diakses ketika ditonton dan disunting ketika ada kekeliruan. Yang lebih penting lagi dari pertimbangan-pertimbangan di atas adalah mempertimbangkan pemirsa dan ketersampaian pesan dari video tersebut.

International Conference Invitation and Registration

The 2nd International Conference on Disability and Diversity in Asia
“Theorizing Advocacy and Research for Disability Policy and Social Inclusion”

Date: 24-25 September 2019
Location: Law Faculty of Brawijaya University Malang, East Java Indonesia
Organised jointly with: La Trobe Law School Melbourne Australia, Pusat Studi Layanan Disabilitas (PSLD) Brawijaya University Malang, East Java Indonesia and Australia Indonesia Disability and Research Advocacy Network (AIDRAN)

Public lectures by Professor Patrick Keyzer, Law School La Trobe University

Prof. Patrick Keyzer with participants of public lecture.

Professor Patrick Keyzer, Law School La Trobe University presented two public lectures: ‘The Implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme: Hopes, Dreams, Challenges and Prospects’ at the Faculty of Law – University of Indonesia, Jakarta 24 October 2018 and ‘How is capacity measured in Australian disability law?’ at Jentera Law School, Jakarta 25 October 2018.

Can Indonesian ‘smart cities’ be inclusive?

In the last two decades, the concept of a ‘smart city’ has been progressively adopted by cities in Southeast Asian countries, including cities in Indonesia. The concept originated in the USA and several European countries in the early 1990s, and according to the International Business Machines Corporation (IBM), there are several dimensions to the idea of a ‘smart city,’ including a smart economy, smart mobility, a smart environment, a smart government, smart living, and smart people. The idea behind the ‘smart city’ concept is to make a city more dynamic, and inspire city governments to increase the quality of life for all its inhabitants. This can be done by facilitating the interaction between people, as well as the movement of goods, capital, ideas, and knowledge, through technology.

This article discusses how the concept of a ‘smart city’ has been implemented in Indonesia, and to what extent this concept has positively impacted accessibility and equality for people with disabilities.

For cities in Indonesia, the ‘smart city’ concept is seen as a strategy to address problems associated with its urban population. Big cities like Jakarta, Denpasar, Bandung, Surabaya, Makassar, and Medan for example, must deal with many new people arriving in search of a better life. This has presented city governments with challenges on delivering public services like education, public transport, and health services. The ‘smart city’ concept is expected to help city governments in creating new and innovative policies through the use of technology.

Because the concept of a ‘smart city’ emphasises the importance of ensuring inclusion, this means that all inhabitants, regardless of their backgrounds and identities, are entitled to equal access and participation in public life. All government services and departments, including those that rely on technology, must ensure they are accessible to every citizen, including people with disabilities. Every public service must be accessible to those who are visually impaired, deaf, and have physical disabilities, and it must be accessible to the elderly population as well.

There are two cities in Indonesia which have introduced smart city initiatives to date; the city of Surabaya and the provincial city of DKI Jakarta. Together, they are Indonesia’s two largest cities. Surabaya has claimed to be the first city to introduce the ‘smart city’ concept by initiating an e-government project in 2003. According to Mr Hefli Syarifuddin Madjid, the Head of the Application and Telematics Division in the Communication and Informatics Services of Surabaya City, the e-government project aims to provide residents with access to public services like health, education, and public transport.


To support this initiative, the Surabaya city government introduced an app-based service known as Matakota. Matakota was designed to increase mobility and safety for residents in Surabaya by providing information about traffic jams, natural disasters, and any criminal activity. It is equipped with a ‘panic button’ that can be used to call police or an ambulance in case of an emergency. Another feature is an early Warning System feature to warm victims in case of a looming natural disaster. This was introduced as a mitigation policy to reduce the number of victims in the event of natural disaster.

Following Surabaya’s lead, Jakarta launched the smart city initiative (Jakarta Smart City/JSC) in 2016 by introducing Qlue. Qlue is an online app-based service which provides information on public services, and allows Jakarta’s residents to communicate directly with the city government on any issue regarding these services. In an interview with Mr Gerry Magenta from Qlue Indonesia, he stated that the name of Qlue was inspired by the Bahasa Indonesian word ‘keluhan’, which means complaint, and by the English word ‘clue’. This name is meant to convey Jakarta’s smart city vision in creating solutions, and promoting transparency and public participation. Qlue can be accessed from stakeholders’ mobile phones, and stakeholders include the local government (including the Regional Device Work Unit), Jakarta’ residents, and the broader public.


Unfortunately, from my observation, these two applications have not been equipped with tools that allow people with disabilities to access these services easily, and was it not designed with this in mind either. For example, the app does not provide any information on which public transport services are accessible to people with disabilities,  and I noticed that the applications are not equipped with features for visually impaired people, people with hearing impairment, or people with physical disabilities.

Therefore, it seems that these two cities have neglected their legal obligations to people with disabilities, in regards to the smart city concept. The city of Surabaya is, in fact, required to guarantee people with a disability access to the Social Welfare Services, as per the Local Regulation No.2/2012 on Social Welfare Services (Peraturan Daerah Kota Surabaya No.2/2012 tentang Penyelenggaraan Kesejahteraan Sosial). This is in addition to the Regulation of the Mayor of Surabaya No. 24/2018 on the rights of people with disabilities to access financial support for Health Services. Similarly, the provincial government of DKI Jakarta has failed to implement its Local Regulation No. 10/2011 on the Protection of People with Disabilities (Peraturan Daerah Khusus Ibukota Jakarta No. 10/2011 tentang Perlindungan Penyandang Disabilitas), which guarantees that people with disabilities have a right to education, health, sport, art and culture, labour, business, public services, participate in politics, and have access to justice.

While both cities have introduced legal regulations to fulfill the rights of people with disabilities, it is obvious that these policies have not been implemented well. Both initiatives fail to guarantee accessible services to people with disabilities. This is made clear by the apps’ lack of accessibility to support people with disabilities and the lack of information on services available on the app for people with disabilities.

Kurnia Novianti

PhD Candidate

Anthropology Program

Department of Social Inquiry

School of Humanities and Social Sciences



Nominal Group Technique Workshop

Hotel Santika Malang
Hosted by PSLD UB

This workshop is jointly organised by AIDRAN and PSLD in Malang on 23 November 2018. About 52 participants attended the workshop. They were researchers, disability students and activists from around East Java, and local government officials. The workshop was led by Professor Patrick Keyzer. This workshop is one of the activities conducted by AIDRAN in collaboration with PSLD with the objective to share experience in researching disability issues. This training is organised by Center for the Study of Disability Studies and Services, Universitas Brawijaya (CDSS UB) and Australia-Indonesia Disability Research and Advocacy Network (AIDRAN), La Trobe Law School La Trobe University, Sociology Department UB, and UB Law Faculty.

Nominal Group Technique is one methodology that researchers use to gather data and information. It is a group process involving problem identification, solution generation, and decision making. It can be used in groups of many sizes, who want to make their decision quickly, as by a vote, but want everyone’s opinions are taken into account (as opposed to traditional voting, where only the largest group is considered). By using NGT as a methodology, researchers can extract answers to questions from small focus groups of six or more people. Participants in the group can give their answer in a group setting and learn from others on the range of answer. This process allows the participant to get a perspective on the intensity of the issue. The different answers that are collected from the group might also help researchers to build questionnaires to dive into a thorough and detail information or data. 

Another key benefit of doing NGT is to help researchers avoid confirmation bias in social science research. NGT is a research exercise that allows researchers to analyse a different perspective gather from each group which could lead researchers to go deeper into getting further elaboration, for example, on the nature of the differences or the level of experience or the other sociological backgrounds of participants in each group. 

At this workshop, participants practised the NGT data gathering with participants being asked to reflect on a research question “Apa yang bias dilakukan oleh Pemerintah untuk memajukan hak penyandang disabilitas di Indonesia”. Participants were divided into seven groups. Each group listed the answers from every member of the group before sharing it with their group. The group then discuss openly and compile their first six responses. The responses are then pooled for the member of the group to “vote” on the outcomes to build a group consensus. 

From the exercise, participants learn how NGT allows researchers and individual to work in a group to develop agendas and action lists. This exercise also allows every individual to have their view and discuss it within their groups before developing group consensus. It can also be used to build questionnaire items that have content and construct validity.


After hosting Asian Para Games, Indonesia should make disability inclusion a priority

Indonesia successfully hosted the Asian Para Games in October. Not only did Indonesian Para athletes break their medal target like their fellow athletes competing in the Asian Games, the event made disability no longer invisible.

Athletes from Thailand in action during the Asian Para Games 2018. http://www.shutterstock.com/FocusDzign

For many Indonesians, it was probably the first time they had been exposed to people with disabilities and to the different abilities they possess.

Lack of inclusive schools has prevented people with disabilities from sustaining life pathways that would enable them to reach their full capabilities. The special schools have led to segregation and discrimination.

The general public does not understand the challenges faced by people with disabilities to exercise their basic human rights to live independent lives. Lack of accessible infrastructure, public facilities and inclusive policies prevent them from participating on a par with their non-disabled peers.

Hosting the Asian Para Games was a milestone for inclusion in Indonesia. It forced the government to build accessible infrastructure and strengthen the campaign to change attitudes – barriers that have hindered people with disabilities from being included in the life of society.

But the work for disability inclusion should go beyond hosting a sporting event. It needs a continuous sustained effort involving government down to the village level working together with people with disabilities.

An example of this is found in Plembutan village, in Gunung Kidul, Yogyakarta. Its administration has included promotion of inclusion of people with disabilities in their village development agenda since 2014.

The village recently hosted the Temu Inklusi (Inclusive Meeting), the third biennial gathering of Disabled People Organisations (DPOs). The meeting brings together DPOs from the eastern and western parts of Indonesia, other civil society organisations and government representatives.

The story of Plembutan village

Plembutan village is located in the district of Gunung Kidul and has 5,000 inhabitants.

The village leaders have been in talks with international organisationsand national DPOs such as SIGAB for a number of years. In 2017, the village released a decree to include vulnerable groups in village development.

Edi Suprianti, the village head, said the decree was to ensure the local village administration and community members include the participation of people with disabilities and change perceptions and attitudes towards disabilities. Not only is the village office now accessible, it regularly organises training and entrepreneurship workshops as a pathway for people with disabilities to live independently.

The village is the only one in Indonesia so far that has introduced inclusive village regulation. This regulation allows Edi to allocate funding from the village annual development budget to develop a model of social protection for people with disabilities. This helps to ensure they can live independently with dignity and respect.

Temu Inklusi gathering at Plembutan village, Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Author provided

Disability movement

At least seven of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) closely relate to the enhancement of the rights of persons with disabilities. Among these are social protection, quality education, economic independence, employment, inclusive public facilities and infrastructure and access to justice.

This year’s Temu Inklusi event, jointly organised by the Indonesian Coordinating Ministry for Human Development and Culture and Yogyakarta-based disabled people organisation SIGAB, aimed to contribute to efforts to implement the principles of the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities and the SDGs.

Disability activism in Indonesia has benefited from Indonesia’s political reform and democratisation. Indonesia started to see the founding of DPOs in the late 1980s and early 1990s. DPOs have been partnering with other civil society organisation and rights activists in influencing significant legal reform.

Indonesia ratified the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities in 2011. In 2016, it passed the Disability Rights Law.

The 2016 legislation originally required the Indonesian government to introduce 15 accompanying regulations. These would regulate various aspects of disability inclusion from inclusive public facilities, employment and social welfare to access to justice.

However, the government has now compressed those 15 to seven regulations. These cover planning, implementation and evaluation of the need of people with disabilities, accessible accommodation for legal services, and inclusive education, social welfare, accessible public facilities, incentive and concessions on services to people with disabilities. The law also requires the establishment of a National Disability Commission.

Progress in the drafting of these regulations has been slow as it requires cross-sectoral approach from various government ministries. These include the Ministry of National Development Planning, Ministry of Human Rights and Law, Ministry of Social Services, and Ministry of Public Facilities and Housing.

The Ministry of National Planning recently announced that the government will finally pass the regulation on appropriate accommodation for people with disabilities by the end of the year.

How to move forward?

An important insight from discussions at Temu Inklusi was that enhancing the rights of people with disabilities requires all sectors to work together. Practices at local level, such as in Desa Plembutan, resulted from the village engaging with organisations working in disability sectors.

Indonesia’s decentralisation and the introduction of Village Law in 2015 have given autonomy for villages to plan, prioritise and finance their development agendas based on their individual needs and priorities.

Currently, Indonesia lacks adequate national data on disabilities that might assist in properly planning for the prevalence of certain disabilities and particular needs of individuals. So, devolving responsibility to smaller administrative regions may work well as a strategy, for now.

As the campaigns for presidential and legislative elections have begun, we should look at what candidates are saying and plan to do to fulfil the unmet needs of people with disabilities.

Author: Dr Dina Afrianty, Research fellow at La Trobe University and President of AIDRAN

This article is originally published by The Conversation