President of the Conference, Ambassador Oh JoonExcellencies,Colleagues,Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am honored to join this dialogue with States Parties to deliver a message from Under-Secretary-General Wu Hongbo, who could not be here today. And I quote:
2016 marks the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities or the CRPD. To date, 164 States have ratified or acceded to the Convention. This session is among various events to be held throughout the year to commemorate the 10th anniversary. A celebratory event will be held at UN Headquarters during the commemoration of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the week of 3 December 2016. I look forward to your participation in the upcoming events and to discussing the next steps in the implementation of the Convention.
Building on many decades of work, DESA continues to support States Parties in the implementation of the Convention and in mainstreaming the rights and perspectives of persons with disabilities in development efforts, including the 2030 Agenda. We are supporting Member States to translate these international frameworks into national action for persons with disabilities.
Over the past year, DESA has developed a blueprint report to assess the status of disability in development globally. The report clearly indicates that there is a paucity of internationally comparable data on disability. In response, the Department is increasing its capacity to support Member States efforts to collect and use disability data, including through provision of technical assistance to improve the monitoring and evaluation of disability inclusion in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.
DESA also continues to assist Member States and other stakeholders in translating the principles of the CRPD into practical actions. For example, we have used our “Toolkit on Disability for Africa” to carry out a number of regional trainings and training-of-trainer workshops for government officials and representatives of DPOs [disabled-persons’ organizations] in 10 countries in eastern and western Africa. At the request of governments, related national workshops have also been carried out in Kenya, Malawi, South Africa, Togo, Uganda and Zambia.
Our normative work also continues to focus on ensuring that international and national development commitments give due consideration to the needs and voices of persons with disabilities. At the UN Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction last year, and in the lead up to the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul, this May, the DESA Forum on Disability and Development provided a useful platform for discussing disability-inclusive development efforts and humanitarian action The outcomes gathered broad support for disability-inclusion in the respective agendas.
In the lead up to HABITAT III, we have hosted a number of fora and expert groups dedicated to exploring means of reducing the inequalities faced by persons with disabilities in society and development, and to developing recommendations for further advancing accessible and inclusive urban development.
We have also begun the preparation of a comprehensive report to be submitted to the UN General Assembly in 2018, which will reflect on the progress made in realizing the relevant internationally agreed development goals, in line with the goals and objectives of the Convention. The intention is to present a global picture of “where we are” and to support policy development for ensuring the realization of disability-inclusion. In DESA, we will also continue to develop our capacity to support the collection and dissemination of official disability statistics and promote evidence-based decision-making.
I am confident that the next 15 years will bring positive, transformative change to society, for and with persons with disabilities. Bridging the Convention with the implementation of the 2030 Agenda will be crucial.
This ends the message of Under-Secretary-General Wu.
Thursday, June 16, 2016