Disability Equality Training For University Of Malaya Disability Liaison Officers

The Students Affairs Division (Bahagian Hal Ehwal Pelajar) of University of Malaya organised a 2-1/2 day Disability Equality Training (DET) workshop from 28th to 30th November for its Disability Liaison Officers (DLOs). This is a newly created position. The DLOs comprise principals and supervisors from all the residential colleges and academic staff. They are the resource persons on disability matters for students and staff of the university.

Peter Tan facilitating DET Workshop for Disability Liaison Officers (DLOs)
Peter Tan facilitating the Disability Equality Training (DET) Workshop at University of Malaya.
Photo by Wuan.

The objectives of this workshop were to identify and include good practices in their work following the Social Model of Disability and to develop a roadmap on implementation of inclusive facilities and services in campus. The fact that the participants already have a basic understanding of disability issues made my work as their facilitator easier.

UM Disability Liaison Officers at DET Workshop
University of Malaya Disability Liaison Officers at the Disability Equality Training Workshop.
Photo by Wuan.

The various DET modules reinforced and expanded the DLOs’ existing knowledge about disability in a logical and easy to understand method. We covered topics like the Social Model of Disability and Medical Model of Disability, and examined the differences between impairment and disability, disabled person and person with disabilities, and worked on paradigm-changing exercises using the open box solution to solve problems. These are the crucial knowledge that the DLOs need when they deal with disability matters.

Group 2 presenting their action plan.
Photo by Wuan.

The workshop concluded with the DLOs coming out with feasible action plans to improve on the existing services and facilities for disabled students. These include coming out with a Standard Operating Procedures for DLOs, increasing the availability of documents in accessible formats and an accessibility map of the campus. These plans are a good start in making DLOs understand their roles and at the same time provide useful information to disabled students who may need them.

Group 3 presenting their action plan.
Photo by Wuan.

It was a privilege to be a facilitator to this faculty of academics, all of whom are experts on their respective fields of study. I would like to record my gratitude to Puan Halimaton Attan, Head Assistant Registrar, and Puan Maznah Azis, Psychology Officer of the Counseling, Career & Disability Section of the Division of Student Affairs, for initiating this workshop and their support in seeing it to a successful conclusion. I hope this will be the catalyst to make University of Malaya a fully accessible campus.

Group 1 presenting their action plan.
Photo by Wuan.

Group photo with Disability Liaison Officers of University of Malaya.
Photo by Wuan.

Author: Peter Tan

Peter Gabriel Tan. Penangite residing in the Klang Valley. Blissfully married to Wuan. A LaSallian through and through. Slave to three cats. Wheelchair user since 1984. End-stage renal disease since 2017. Principal Facilitator at Peter Tan Training specialising in Disability Equality Training. Former columnist of Breaking Barriers with The Borneo Post. This blog chronicles my life, thoughts and opinions. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.