Global report on children with disabilities released
Americas, May 31 2013
Children with disabilities and their communities would both benefit if society focused on what those children can achieve, rather than what they cannot do, according to UNICEF’s annual State of the World’s Children’s report, the report examines the discrimination and deprivations that these children and their families confront. It describes the progress that is being made, albeit unevenly, in ensuring that children with disabilities have the fair access to services and opportunities that is their right. And it urges governments, their international partners, civil society, and employers to take concrete steps to advance the cause of inclusion – as a matter of equity and for the benefit of all.
In order to achieve this goal, international agencies and donors and their national and local partners should include children with disabilities in the objectives, targets and monitoring indicators of all development programmes.
Exclusion is often the consequence of invisibility. Few countries have reliable information on how many of their citizens are children with disabilities, what disabilities they have or how these disabilities affect their lives. As a result, few are capable of knowing what types and amounts of support these children and their families need – much less how best to respond. One of the report’s chapters is therefore devoted to exploring challenges, progress and opportunities in the area of data collection and analysis.
The report also contains a series of personal essays by young people with disabilities and some of the people who work with children and adolescents with disabilities – among them, parents, caregivers and advocates.
It is our hope that this report will inform the dialogue and nurture the action that is necessary to create a world in which children with disabilities enjoy their rights on a par with other children, even in the most remote settings and the most deprived circumstances.
To access The State of the World’s Children – Children with Disabilities:
Download the PDF version of the report