In 2002 the Lebanese Physically Handicapped Union (LPHU) conducted a
study of 200 graduates of institutions for disabled people, to find out
if institutions help disabled people enjoy their rights in the areas of
education and employment, as set out in Lebanon's laws on disability
rights and education law. It looked at the experience of 200 graduates
of institutions for disabled people, aged between 14 and 40. Special
institutions for disabled children are common in Lebanon, although local
and international evidence indicates that these institutions undermine
LPHU's study found that special institutions have much lower levels of
educational attainment than mainstream schools, and that few graduates
find employment. Most employed institution graduates earn less than the
minimum wage. Few institution graduates are covered by Lebanon's state
health and retirement insurance. Long term trends are not promising.
Younger graduates were more likely to have low levels of educational
attainment and most likely be unemployed. Women graduates did better
than men at school, but fared worse in the labour market.
The study showed that disabled people are one of several groups paying
the price for Lebanon's current economic policies. These economic
policies, sponsored by the Lebanese government and international donors,
often prioritise growth over fairness. Effective solutions for disabled
people in Lebanon could lead to improvements in the lives of people from
other marginal groups.
Disability and livelihoods in Lebanon, presented at Staying Poor: Chronic Poverty and Development Policy, Institute for Development Policy and Management, University of Manchester, 7-9 April 2003. Chronic Poverty Research Centre (CPRC), Manchester, UK, 13 pp.
Disability and livelihoods in Lebanon.