It is very likely that you have read the title as persons with disabilities need more quotas. No surprise. Whenever some serious deliberation for the persons with special needs takes place it ends with proposing more quotas and protective policies. In our zest and zeal to protect the interests of persons with disabilities we tend to overlook the spirit of protectionism that such measures are just meant to be a foot in the door and are not even peanuts in the face of the requirements of these person. What actually is required are policies and practical steps to mainstream these persons without making them feel a burden on anyone. How many times you have heard someone talking about mainstreaming the persons with disabilities? Chances are that your reply would either be, “very rarely” or “never”. How many time you have thought that why it should only be doling out few thousands of rupees as stipends to them which are received sitting at home but not a stable employment in the public sphere? Besides employment, a number of steps are required for the mainstreaming of special needs persons. For example, one important step had been to make all public buildings accessible to these persons. But the fact remains that the implementation of these building codes remains sketchy. So how many times we can blame the government, when people too are not ready to assume their part of social responsibility. We need to move away from the culture of sympathy for the persons with special needs and instead need to factor in their requirements at the planning and development stage. Disability does not mean dependence. The representatives of the disabled people too cannot absolve themselves of the responsibility for this sorry state of affairs. The charter of demands presented by the representatives of the disabled people, every now and then, too starts and ends with a demand for jobs (jobs here means government jobs only). Mainstreaming or demanding facilities for the disabled of all ages and sexes also do not figure high on the priorities of these representatives. The local organizations really need to learn something from their counterparts operating in other parts of the world and should first of all focus on mainstreaming. Mainstreaming would bring them visibility, ensure their dignity as would end dependency and thus a critical step towards recognizing their rights and end various kinds of discrimination inherent in the social and state structures. Currently, an NGO by the name of Disability Rights Alliance is running a campaign in the Indian State of Tamil Nadu for accessible transport for the persons with special needs. Their demand is very basic, and that is to make all public buses have level boarding for the disabled, old, pregnant and the children. It requires to refurbish the existing buses and not to procure any buses in future which do not have this essential feature. We have something here to learn from our neighbors. Such initiatives do not take much beyond sufficiently sensitized urban planners and the development bureaucracy. We have been conditioned into thinking that every step towards inclusivity is supposed to be resource intensive. It is a safe guess that if a similar demand is made in Pakistan, the standard response of the development and finance bureaucracy would be the paucity of resources for new initiatives. How essential is mobility for social mobility is a no brainer. Setting up new educational institutions for the special persons; giving them employments on quotas; establishing recreational facilities for them and initiating special programs for their health and rehabilitation, all come to naught when they are not able to access those facilities. We need to move away from the culture of sympathy for the persons with special needs and instead need to factor in their requirements at the planning and development stage. Disability does not mean dependence. We have to take effective steps towards inclusivity and mainstreaming and the first steps may be however small but should be consistent and not one-time projects only. The author is public policy practitioner and specializes in the international human rights and gender laws. Her special area of interest is the public policy guided by a rights approach. She can be reached at Twitter @SaimaAhad3.