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Saturday, 16 April 2016
Govt of India to train 25 lakh persons with disabilities in 7 years: Thaawar Chand Gehlot
India hosts 200 people with disabilities from 70 countries for disability inclusive Sustainable Development Goals.
Are developing countries ready for a disability inclusive agenda for development? This is the question over 200 people with disabilities from over 70 countries from Asia, Africa, CIS, Latin America, and North America & Caribbean are asking at the 9th World Assembly of Disabled People’s International (DPI) here. DPI is the world’s first cross-disability human rights based global disabled people’s organisation with membership in 150 countries.
The theme of the Assembly is ‘Building Human Capital – Realizing the SDGs for Persons with Disabilities’’.
WHO and the World Bank estimate that one billion people in the world live with a disability. Of this, as many as 800 million live in the developing countries – or the Global South. Moreover, 20 percent of the world’s poorest are people with disabilities. Amidst this, the world has now embarked on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development or the SDGs. The SDGs aim to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger. Disability is mentioned specifically at seven places.
Speaking at the opening of the Assembly, Thaawar Chand Gehlot, Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment said that the government of India is committed to the cause of disability and it is reflected by the Prime Minister’s personal interest in the issues. Prime Minister Modi, in a message that was read out, said, “India believes in the principles of inclusion and integration. It stems from the Indian philosophy of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam – that the whole world is our family – a philosophy that transcends all life forms, including our environment. Disabled people constitute a significant portion of the population of India and their need for meaningful employment largely remains unmet.The Govt of India has targeted training 25 lac PWDs (Persons with disabilities) in the next 7 years”
“People are hindered to live a full life because of society. Surely, as we age, all of us will be disabled. This is about all of us, and not about the disabled,“ said Ambassador Luis Gallegos, former Permanent Representative of Ecuador to the UN in both New York and Geneva. He was also chair of the ad-hoc committee that drafted the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The importance of ensuring that people with disabilities are empowered to advocate for disability inclusibve SDGs is also because focus of implementation for these goals will be at the national level. Grassroots leaders need to have both adequate information and tools to advocate for disability inclusive SDGs. A recent study by DPI and the Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs (G3ict) shows that 78 percent of Global South countries do not collect any data on disability related to the SDGs. The study found significant gaps exist among the majority of Global South countries with respect to their readiness and preparedness for impementing, monitoring, and reporting on key SDGs.
If people with disabilities are to monitor whether development programmes in their countries are inclusive of disability or not, it is important to develop their capacity to advocate for disability data collection and disability data disaggregation.
“DPI is also the only organisation with such an expansive reach. DPI's 9th World Assembly will leverage this huge human capital that DPI commands to steer the global disability movement towards a stronger grassroots based movement. DPI's 9th World Assembly is therefore built around the crucial questions of access, knowledge transfer, monitoring and self-determination and representation in the 2030 Agenda process as well as in other human rights processes,” said Javed Abidi, Global Chair of DPI and Director of National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP).
A training of disabled leaders on promoting inclusive ICT policies was also organised by G3ict and BarrierBreak.