on May 11, 2004
PROPOSAL : NEW POLICY ON LOW COST HOUSING FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
We would like to propose that two (2) schemes to be introduced to meet the need for low cost housing for the disabled population.
A. Low-cost House Rent / Rent-and-Buy Scheme
1. The government should be the owners of the low-cost houses. People with disabilities should be allowed to rent the low-cost houses from the government at a minimum rental, as deemed fit and suitable. After a period of twenty (20) years or after such a period as the government deems fit and suitable, the disabled people shall own the rented house.
2. The accumulated rental paid to the government over the years shall be taken as the purchase price of the house and there shall be no down payment involved in the purchase of the house.
3. The unemployed disabled should be allowed to pay the rental through a sponsorship scheme arranged by the respective NGOs (Non-Government Organizations).
4. There shall not be any prohibition to the disabled chief tenant if he/she wants to sub-let the house to the other tenants. It is necessary for the disabled (especially those who are intellectually disabled) to stay with their friends as they need companionship and mutual support.
B. Low-cost House Purchase Scheme
1. People with disabilities within the low salary group should be allowed to purchase low-cost houses. The 20% discount on the purchase price of a low cost house for disabled persons, as announced in the budget 2004 should be implemented immediately.
2. People with disabilities earning less than RM1,500 a month should be given a chance to purchase low-cost houses if they manage to obtain a bank loan to finance their purchase of the house.
3. The government should give financial assistance such as interest-free loans to disabled applicants.
4. The regulation insisting upon marriage for owning low-cost houses should not be applied to people with disabilities. In fact, the disabled need to have their own houses before they are able to get married.
5. The Government should set up a special unit or appoint a special officer to be in charge of the housing scheme for the disabled.
6. The process of application for low-cost housing by the disabled should be simplified.
7. The government should allocate 10% of the low-cost houses built in a housing area for the needy population (including people with disabilities, senior citizens and single mothers), and such houses should have disabled friendly features.
8. The Government should keep the NGOs informed and updated on any new low-cost housing development so that the NGOs would be able to help the disabled to make immediate application.
9. Disabled persons who are wheelchair users or who have mobility impairments should be given priority consideration for owning houses on the ground floor in multi-storey low cost houses. However, other disabled people should not be compelled to stay on the ground floor if they choose to own houses on the upper floors.