Persons with deafblindness should have access to the same services as persons without disabilities, but often, they are excluded based solely on the grounds of their disability. These mainstream services include education, employment, social protection, recreational facilities, voting, vocational training, emergency services, the courts, the justice system, etc.
These services should be mainstreamed to ensure the inclusion of all persons with disabilities with a particular focus on underrepresented groups, including persons with deafblindness.
Services that are ordinarily available to the public should not be segregated or separate services for persons with disabilities because this leads to isolation and social exclusion and increases stigma and discrimination. These mainstream services should link with the preconditions for disability inclusion and disability-specific services for persons with deafblindness, such as services for disability identification, assessment, and referral; rehabilitative / CBR services; disability support services (such as interpreter-guides/Deafblind interpreters); access to assistive devices and technologies; and accessibility measures.
Additionally, these mainstream services should also ensure the participation of persons with deafblindness and be based on data and research on good practices for persons with deafblindness[i].
The following section reviews good practices for persons with deafblindness in mainstream services.
[i] UNPRPD, The preconditions necessary to ensure disability inclusion across policies, services, and other interventions, https://unprpd.org/site/default/files/library/2020-08/Annex%202%20UNPRPD%204th%20Funding%20Call%20Preconditions%20to%20disability%20inclusion%20ACC.pdf, accessed May 2022, p. 4.