|United Voice (UV) is the first society in Malaysia that is led by persons with learning disabilities which was registered in July 2005.
The members of UV include persons with Down Syndrome, Autism, Attention Deficit Disorder, Global Developmental Delay and other specific learning disabilities.
Since UV became a registered society, it has grown rapidly. More parents are beginning to realize the need to expose their children with learning disabilities to the self-advocacy movement activities so that they learn to be more independent and develop skills to voice up for themselves.
Through the years, UV has been an advocate to ensure persons with learning disabilities are given the right to be part of the community, to work, to socialise, to contribute and to be respected as individuals.
We participated in awareness programs for the public, government officials, corporate sector, NGOs, schools and universities to foster better understanding and acceptance by our community.
Recognition and Self-Advocacy Promotion
United Voice pioneered the self-advocacy movement in Malaysia to reduce the isolation of people with learning disabilities and give them the tools and experience to take greater control over their own lives and be integrated in the community. UV has been actively collaborating with Malaysia Welfare Department, Malaysia Special Education Department, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), local universities and NGOs to organize awareness events on the importance of self-advocacy.
United Voice’s effort in developing the self-advocacy movement in Malaysia has been commended by UNESCAP, UNDP, APCD and JICA Malaysia.
United Nations Economic and Social Commission Asia Pacific (UNESCAP) invited two leaders of United Voice to participate in a workshop on empowering people with learning disabilities held in Shanghai in 2007.
Asia Pacific Development Centre on Disabilities (APCD) invited the President of United Voice to share about self-advocacy movement in Malaysia and employment for people with learning disabilities at a workshop held in Bangkok in February 2008.
United Voice collaborated with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA Malaysia) in April 2008 to organize training seminars on self-advocacy and employment held in Special Education Department Putrajaya, Kota Kinabalu, Kota Bahru, Ipoh, Seremban, Penang and Melaka.
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Malaysia and Malaysia Economy Planning Unit (EPU) engaged United Voice to conduct an awareness training on People with Learning Disabilities and Employment in Johor for Management of Carrefour Malaysia and Majlis Bandaraya Johor Bahru in September 2008.
We actively participate in events to promote the needs of persons with learning disabilities. UV participates in national forums and dialogues that are related to policy-making and legislations for persons with learning disabilities.
Our society is also involved with other disability groups in advocating for persons with disabilities in Malaysia. We are a member of BEAT (Barrier-free Environment and Transport) Advocacy Group and Malaysia Confederation of the Disabled (MCD). We collaborate with BEAT members to conduct Disability Equality Training Programme for Air Asia Academy, Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd (KTM), Attorney General’s Chambers Malaysia and others.