Open doors for disability inclusive development

Open doors for disability inclusive development

“Look at people with disabilities as differently-abled,” urged 10-year-old Emmanuel Elisha Ford at the International Day of Persons with Disabilities last December. Being blind since birth, Emmanuel is one of 1 billion people worldwide who lives with a disability. To safeguard that their rights and needs are protected beyond the MDGs target date of 2015, an online discussion has just been launched.

In many countries gains made on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have not been successful in reaching marginalized populations, especially persons with disabilities. This clearly highlights the importance of taking inequality, discrimination and social exclusion more effectively into account both in the ongoing efforts to accelerate progress on the MDGs and in the definition of the new development framework that will succeed the MDGs after 2015.

On 23 September this year, the UN General Assembly will hold a High-level Meeting on disability and development, with the overarching theme “The way forward: a disability inclusive development agenda towards 2015 and beyond”, at UN Headquarters in New York.

To ensure that the post-2015 agenda is inclusive of persons with disabilities, DESA in collaboration with UNICEF, and with the support of the UN Partnership to promote the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNPRPD), is holding an online, moderated consultation on the World We Want 2015 platform, to gather views from a broad range of actors on how to include disability in the post-2015 development framework, in order to inform the High-level Meeting.

These consultations aim to look more deeply at the particular challenges faced in different regions, and identify the specific measures and actions to be taken by different stakeholders to promote a disability-inclusive society. Simultaneous consultations will take place in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

The consultation aims to be as broad and open as possible, in order to enable a multitude of voices to be heard from Governments, UN system, academia, media, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), civil society and the private sector, as well as persons with disabilities and their organizations. The recommendations emerging from the contributions will be incorporated into a report on the consultations to inform the outcome document for the September High-Level Meeting.

Last year, in his message for the 2012 International Day of Persons with Disabilities, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: “Together, we must strive to achieve the goals of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: to eliminate discrimination and exclusion, and to create societies that value diversity and inclusion”.

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