International Day of Disabled Persons-3 December 2004 (Image: United Nations)The International Day of Disabled Persons, 3 December, was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 1992. The annual observance of the Day aims to increase awareness and understanding of disability issues and trends, and to mobilise support for practical action at all levels, by, with and for persons with disabilities.

This year's theme is "Decent work for persons with disabilities". The theme of the Day is based on the goal of full and equal enjoyment of human rights and participation in society by persons with disabilities.


UN Secretary-General's Message on International Day of Disabled Persons Encourages Pledge By All to Ensure Disabled Persons' Full Participation in Communikty Life







UN Update on Signatories & Ratification to the Convention:







Disabled Peoples' International

Beijing + 10: Position Paper on Women with Disabilities

March 2005

By Dinah Radtke, Vice Chair Disabled Peoples' International www.dpi.org

There are at least 300 million disabled women living in all countries of the world. 82% of these live in the developing world. Disabled women and girls are much more marginalizes and mostly invisible to policy makers. Disabled women and girls are subject to massive human rights violations without regard to their age, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, class, religious and other status. WE no longer accept being objects of violence and discrimination and we insist on respect for and protection of our human rights.

WE recognize the stated commitment of the United Nations to the provision of human rights of people with disabilities. We recognize its Commitment to Eliminate all forms of Discrimination against Women and further recognize its recent work to develop a Convention on the Rights and Dignity of People with Disabilities. But in order to be aware of the special needs of women and girls with disabilities it is necessary to name these needs in all relevant official documents.

We strongly recommend addressing the unique issues of disabled women and girls in all of the 12 critical areas of concern as outlined by the Beijing Platform for Action, and especially in the fields of:

  • Education and training which is not a priority in many countries for disabled women and girls. We need inclusive systems without barriers ensuring the necessary special support.
  • Violence: disabled women and girls are more often subject to various types of violence and particular sexual violence that non-disabled women and girls. We need effective programs and legal measure to combat all types of violence.
  • Motherhood and sexuality: These are often denied for women and girls with disabilities. Discriminating laws especially with regard to sterilization have to be abolished.
  • Healthcare: Women with disabilities sometimes have little or no access to healthcare facilities, services and information, among others to gynecological and maternal care.
  • HIV/AIDS: women and girls with disabilities are more vulnerable to HIV/AIDS transmission given their increased risk of sexual violence. Special measures and programs are needed to protect disabled girls and women.
  • Poverty: disabled women and girls are more likely to live in poverty and be excluded form the work force. We call on UN organizations, in particular the World Bank in their poverty alleviation strategies, the ILO on their "right to decent work", UNESCO in their goal of "Education for ALL". Each of these organizations must ensure their work includes women and girls with disabilities.
  • Human Rights: all of the above points are violations of human rights standards as articulated and ensured for all people under the international human rights treaties. We thus strongly call the governments to reaffirm the entire scope of the Human Rights of women and girls with disabilities, including the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in order to achieve the internationally agreed upon development goals as well as those contained in the millennium declaration. WE pledge to undertake further action to integrate women and girls with disabilities in the implementation.



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