[Excerpt] The inclusion of persons with disabilities in general programmes of vocational training has been called for by the ILO in international labour standards over many years, including standards relating to Human Resources Development and disability-related standards. This call is taken up strongly in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities which calls on States Parties to take appropriate steps to enable persons with disabilities to have effective access to general tertiary education, vocational and life-long learning without discrimination and on an equal basis with others, and to ensure that reasonable accommodation is provided to that effect.
While many countries have expressed commitment to this vision of inclusive vocational training, progress has been limited, even in countries which have adopted policies to promote, and there has been limited analysis of the factors hindering the effective implementation of such policies. It was thus appropriate for the ILO to undertake this exploratory study, to seek to pinpoint elements of policy and practice that might need to be addressed, if these policies on inclusion are to make a difference to persons with disabilities seeking to develop their skills with a view to obtaining decent jobs. The issues identified in this study will hopefully contribute to the wider policy debate, particularly on the matter of instructor preparation for disability inclusion and on the impact of funding arrangements. It will also hopefully stimulate further research to establish whether the patterns identified here are general patterns to be found and tackled elsewhere.