60 disabled women work as journalists for news network

AA Photo

A group of 60 disabled women start work as reporters at a new communication network, allowing them to report news and answer any questions from their perspective.

The project `Accessible Woman News Network' initiated by the Six Points Association of the Blind employed sixty women from different parts of Turkey to answer questions about expectations, requests, priorities and problems they may have to the public.

The project's education consultant and journalist Selen Doğan told Anadolu Agency that the main aim of this project is to increase the strength of media representation for disabled women, stating that the project is unique and first of its kind.

The platform was launched officially in March this year and has published more than 80 articles so far.

Doğan said that the ladies had no previous journalism experience but were trained, making the published news stories of "great value."

"They do not just produce news stories- they also conduct interviews and publish stories that are in the external media concerning the disabled community. Right now, in our accessible news network, we have 60 volunteer women that have different types of disabilities working as reporters. We have reporters from Ankara, Istanbul, Gaziantep, Eskişehir and Mersin. Our aim is to encourage women from all around the country to contribute to our network," she said.

Turkey has adopted a set of regulations in recent years to improve the lives of the disabled. The Family and Social Policies Ministry has offered incentives for work places employing disabled citizens since 2014. Businesses creating jobs for the disabled are eligible for free loans and tax incentives as well as partial payment for each disabled employee they hire. Regulations were implemented to increase the employment quota for the disabled and introduced monthly benefits for families with disabled members cared for at home. The disabled are also provided free passes for public transit. Through a state-run employment agency, Turkey provides free loans for disabled entrepreneurs and for projects involving mass employment of disabled people.