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    Medvedev calls for benefits for disability-friendly employers

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    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev proposed on Monday granting benefits to employers who hire people with disabilities.

    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev proposed on Monday granting benefits to employers who hire people with disabilities.

    "We should not shy away from giving preferences to employers who are ready to hire people with disabilities," Medvedev told the liberal online TV station, Rain.

    Small steps have been taken in recent years to improve infrastructure for Russia's estimated 13 million disabled but most have been limited to Moscow and the country has a long way to go before it catches up with its Western peers.

    "There has never been a culture in Russia of integrating disabled people into every-day life," Medvedev said. "They have simply been ignored."

    But the president also noted that the Soviet mentality of ignoring disabilities was slowly beginning to fade.

    In 2008 Russia signed The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that gives greater rights and freedoms to disabled people.

    MOSCOW, April 25 (RIA Novosti)

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