Disability and development NGOs are demanding that international donors and UN member states use this, the MDG midway point, as an opportunity to refocus and to actively monitor and address the needs of the poorest people in society, which are people with disabilities.
Disability is invisible yet there are 650 million persons with disabilities in the world!
80% of persons with disabilities live in the poorest countries in the world.
82% of disabled people remain living below the poverty line in developing countries . While investment in basic services, such as health or education, is insufficient and going down - not up while mortality for children with disabilities is as high as 80% in countries where under five mortality is below 20%.
Yet people with disabilities are largely invisible across the MDGs activities and MDG reporting. The MDG targets and indicators fail to provide global data on the situation of persons with disabilities living in poverty.
The MDG on Universal Primary Education is the one Goal which aims to provide access to education for all. But at the midway stage of the MDGs, of the 22 million children out of school, one third are children with disabilities. Universal primary education will not be achieved if children with disabilities are not targeted and actively included in actions to promote and monitor progress in inclusive education.
2007 marks an historic year when the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities opened for signature. To date 99 countries have signed up ! We are calling on all international donors, UN and EU Member States and MDG stakeholders to step in line with the UN Convention - to honour their commitments to human rights and poverty reduction and to actively target persons with disabilities across all the MDGs.
The recent European Conference on 'MDGs and Inclusion of Disability' has produced a number of recommendations and proposals for disability specific indicators. We call on all stakeholders in the MDG project to use these recommendations and to work with disability and development NGOs to improve the participation of persons with disabilities in this process to first reduce poverty and then to eradicate poverty from our world.
Nothing about disabled people without disabled people - now is the time for the MDG project to address the rights of 10% of the world's population!
View the recommendations : Word document (100 ko - English) - PDF document (71 Ko - English)
1. Source, UN figures
2. EU aid to basic education fell from 4% in 2000 to 2.7% in 2005
3. DFID figures