Nominations Open: NCPEDP-Mphasis Universal Design Awards 2022

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New Delhi: The National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP), India’s leading disability rights-based advocacy organisation is proud to announce the 13th edition of NCPEDP-Mphasis Universal Design Awards 2022 to recognise the champions of Accessibility and Universal Design for people with disabilities and their contributions towards the cause.

NCPEDP has long believed that the foundation of inclusion is accessibility. To this effect, the awards were launched in 2010 in collaboration with Mphasis to recognise the benchmark for best practices for accessibility for all, promoting local solutions with a focus on affordability, accessibility, and scale. Every year, this distinguished honour is given to individuals and organisations who are making every effort to empower people with disabilities by building accessibility solutions, or universal design in the areas of education, work, infrastructure etc.

Arman Ali, Executive Director, NCPEDP says, “Accessibility means that a person with a disability receives the same information, is able to use the same products and services, engages in the same interactions in an equally effective and integrated manner as an individual without a disability does, but the inherently inaccessible nature of our systems affects the accessibility, rendering it inaccessible for most persons with disabilities. 

The first-ever Global Report on Assistive Technology released by WHO and UNICEF notes that globally, over 2.5 billion people require assistive devices but over a billion of them lack the most basic facilities. India holds the potential to lead the assistive technology market by adopting inclusive designs in all products and services. We must incorporate the principles of universal design within our systems. There is a need to overhaul all existing products and services and redesign them in alignment with the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (RPWD) Act, 2016. The need for assistive technologies that enable and promote participation and inclusion of persons with disabilities is urgent. For years, these awards have been acknowledging a few initiatives that are able to follow this principle of universal design – in both theory and practice and are able to bring a meaningful and empowering change in the lives of people with disabilities.”

“Through our partnership with NCPEDP, we aim to recognise and support solutions that enable an ecosystem of accessibility for all, at an affordable and scalable pace. Universal Designs (UD) develops custom designs that work efficiently and empower a diverse group of people irrespective of their age, ability, or gender. It creates a space that is accessible to everyone and can be measured and applied to all design domains across industries. It is therefore extremely important for UD to be part of our laws and regulations to mandate design solutions that everyone can use equally. The Universal Design Awards ensure that dedicated volunteers get their due recognition which plays a critical role in sensitising the community and inspiring others to join the cause,” said Srikanth Karra, CHRO, Mphasis.

NCPEDP-Mphasis Universal Design Awards nominations are now open for 2022.

The Awards cover accessibility in the following fields:

  1. Built Environment
  2. Transport
  3. Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
  4. Services
  5. Aids and Appliances
  6. Advocacy and Public Policy

2022 will see the 13th edition of the Awards and nominations are invited in the following 4 categories:

A: Persons with Disabilities – Awards in this category are given to People with Disabilities who have created an impact on Accessibility and Universal Design. The work that the person has done can be in policy framework, grass-root level implementation, design and development, access audits, or even rights movement/advocacy. Every year, three people across the country are recognised for the same.

B: Working Professionals – They may be the employee of an Educational Institute/NGO/Corporate Organisation/Government Body that has taken up the cause or a consultant or freelancer who has devoted their time to furthering the cause. Their individual contribution to the cause is a major reason for the success achieved by the organisation/firm/movement. They may also be an individual who is involved in the cause independent of any organisational support and has achieved significant success in the core objective of gaining accessibility for a Person with Disability. Every year, awards in this category are given out to three people across the country.

C: Companies/Organisations – Awards in this category are given to those companies or organisations that have taken up the cause of Accessibility and Universal Design in any of the areas mentioned above. Companies/Organisations that have implemented recruiting or serving People with Disabilities and providing them equal opportunities to participate to the best of their abilities.

These can be any type of Educational Institute/NGO/Corporate Organisation/Government Body/Private Sector/Public Sector/Joint Sector/SME/Proprietorship/Partnership firms. Every year, awards in this category are given out to four companies/organisations across the country.

D: The NCPEDP-Mphasis JavedAbidi Public Policy Award for Universal Design is a category instituted in 2018 in memory of the late Javed Abidi, to recognise advocacy efforts to promote accessibility and the principle of Universal Design. Two awards will be given under this category to individuals/organisations in the area of physical infrastructure, transport, ICT, products, and services doing exemplary work to create a level playing field for People with Disabilities to access the same opportunities and rights as all other citizens of India.

The last date to fill out the application forms is July 23, 2022. The nomination forms can be downloaded from the NCPEDP website www.ncpedp.org. The Awards will be presented on September 28, 2022.