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World Down Syndrome Day
21 March

Secretary-General's Message for 2014

This year’s World Down Syndrome Day focuses on “Health and Wellbeing – Access and Equality for All”.

Too often, persons with disabilities - including those with Down syndrome -- face stigma, discrimination and exclusion.  The lack of full and equal participation of those with Down syndrome affects not only individuals and their families, but society at large.

For children and adults with Down syndrome, equal access to health services is critical to their empowerment and full participation in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  This important fact was recognized by Member States at last year’s UN High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on Disability and Development.  

The emerging post-2015 global development agenda offers a vital opportunity to build a life of dignity for all.  Let us take concrete action now towards the inclusion of all persons with disabilities, including those with Down syndrome.

Ban Ki-moon

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