Enabling Masterplan 2030: Creating Inclusive Environments
11 Oct 2022
The recently released Enabling Masterplan 2030 is a national roadmap guiding efforts to create a more inclusive Singapore by 2030. How has SG Enable advanced disability inclusion since the release of the 3rd Enabling Masterplan (EMP3) five years ago? How will we work with partners to achieve this 2030 goal? Read on to find out!
This article is the third in a three-part series.
Donovan Ho holding an NDP pack and posing in front of the artwork, "Keeping Mother Earth Happy",
which he worked on with seven other artists from Arts@Metta for NDP 2022.
Building an inclusive Singapore starts with awareness and understanding of disabilities and the barriers – physical, digital and attitudinal ones – that persons with disabilities face. In 2020, we took over the role in public education related to disability and inclusion (supported by Enabling Lives Initiative and Care and Share Movement) from National Council of Social Service (NCSS).
Building on our earlier success in celebrating abilities through i’mable, such as our collaborations with Singapore Airlines and Singapore Tourism Board, we expanded i’mable to become a public education initiative which not only celebrates the abilities of persons with disabilities but also encourages the public to take positive action for disability inclusion. From 2020 to 2022, we collaborated with National Day Parade (NDP) organisers each year to feature artworks by persons with disabilities on collaterals such as tote bags, stickers and fans. All 63 NDP artworks were also featured collectively for the first time in an exhibition at Opera Gallery (ION Orchard) in August 2022. Through these works, artists with disabilities displayed their creativity and shared their unique perspectives, as well as their love for Singapore.
Work provides dignity and is a key component in adult life that shapes an individual’s identity, gives a sense of fulfilment, and enables full participation in community life. By focusing on abilities, i’mable raises awareness of an undiscovered talent pool and encourages employers to commit to inclusive hiring with the President’s Challenge Enabling Employment Pledge. It also equips employers and co-workers with knowledge and skills to hire and enable persons with disabilities to thrive and contribute at the workplace.
To recognise the achievements and promise of persons with disabilities, the Goh Chok Tong Enable Awards (GCTEA) was launched in 2019. Each year, about a dozen winners are recognised at a ceremony held at the Istana and graced by President Halimah Yacob as the Guest of Honour. The Awards is named after Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, the Patron of the Mediacorp Enable Fund, a community fund which we administer. Past GCTEA winners have stepped up as iChamps (Inclusion Champions) and advocate for disability inclusion together with us.
Creating a caring and inclusive commuting culture is essential for persons with disabilities to travel independently. We partner public transport operators from the Caring SG Commuters Committee and schools to conduct workshops for volunteers and students, equipping them with the necessary knowledge and skills to assist commuters in need.
The Caring Commuter Champion volunteer corps was also established in 2020 for members of the public keen to assist commuters with mobility needs and disabilities on public transport. We worked with the Caring SG Commuters Committee to develop an online training session to equip new volunteers.
To increase the accessibility of public buses, we worked with Land Transport Authority (LTA) and the Singapore Association of the Visually Handicapped (SAVH) to trial the MAVIS (Mobility Assistance for the Visually Impaired and Special Users) app. This app provides personalised journey guidance to commuters with disabilities and alerts bus captains to such commuters waiting to board or alight from the bus.
Inclusive Healthcare, Communications, Arts & Heritage
To provide healthcare services that are accessible for persons with disabilities, Mount Alvernia Hospital opened its first community outreach medical clinic at Enabling Village in 2015, followed by a dental clinic in 2021. It has sliding doors, large entrances, low registration counters and dedicated quiet spaces for waiting. The dental clinic also has special equipment such as a wheelchair tilter which allows patients to remain in their wheelchairs while being treated, and the clinics’ staff are trained to treat patients with autism and intellectual disabilities.
Mount Alvernia’s dental clinic at Enabling Village is fitted with equipment like a wheelchair tilter,
which allows wheelchair users to remain in their wheelchairs while undergoing treatment.
General practitioners (GPs) are often the first touch point for many persons with disabilities and their caregivers, so we worked with the Ministry of Health and the College of Family Physicians Singapore to conduct a Family Practice Skills Course in July 2022. We trained GPs to better support persons with intellectual disabilities who have cognitive and/or communication challenges through addressing behaviours of concern and future care planning.
As part of our efforts to make essential services inclusive and accessible to persons with disabilities, we supported the National Library Board in its development of the upcoming Punggol Regional Library, the first fully-inclusive library in Singapore. Due to open in early 2023, the library will have calm rooms, assistive technology devices for library patrons and a curated accessible collection of resources for persons with autism and intellectual disabilities.
To minimise barriers preventing persons with disabilities from appreciating the arts and heritage, we signed a two-year MOU with the National Heritage Board in 2021 to develop museums and heritage institutions into more inclusive and accessible spaces. We are also the inclusion partner to Esplanade and have worked with them to improve the accessibility of its premises and programmes, as well as the e-accessibility of its website and digital content.
Disability inclusion is multi-dimensional, and it begins with valuing persons with disabilities as integral members of our society. Advocacy starts with one person, a moment, a thought, and an act of inclusion. Partner us to create a more inclusive Singapore!