People with disabilities (PWDs) in Kasese district have been advised to avoid behaviour that may predispose them to acquiring HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
Ronald Luyima, the programme officer in charge of the youth at the National Union of Disabled Persons in Uganda (NUDIPU), said people take advantage of the vulnerability of the disabled to rape and defile them, hence exposing them to STDs.
He said there is a perception that people with disabilities are free of HIV, a mentality that has led to an increase in the rape and defilement of PWDs.
Luyima was opening a two-day training course in sexual reproduction and HIV/AIDS for youth with disabilities at Virina Hotel in Kasese on Tuesday.
He revealed that NUDIPU has embarked on a programme to sensitise the youth on how to avoid being victims. The two-year project is being conducted in Rubirizi, Kasese, Mpigi, Moroto, Lamwo and Gulu districts.
Luyima said the organisation is overwhelmed with cases of unwanted pregnancies among the youth with disabilities, adding that people who make them pregnant refuse to take responsibility.
"I, therefore, appeal to Ugandans to observe the rights of PWDs," Luyima said.
Biira Rachael, a youth, said the training was timely because they face several challenges, especially in reproductive health.
She added that some of their colleagues are advised not carry pregnancies.