Disability inclusion
is not only a fundamental human right, it is “central to the promise” of the
2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development, UN Secretary-General
António Guterres told the annual conference on the Convention of Rights of
Persons with Disabilities, which began on Tuesday.

“When we fight to secure those rights, we move our world
closer to upholding the core values and principles of the United Nations
Charter”, he explained. “When we remove policies or biases or obstacles to
opportunity for persons with disabilities, the whole world benefits”.

To this end, the UN chief launched a new UN Disability
Inclusion Strategy, “to raise the standards of the UN’s performance on
disability inclusion across the board, and action to bring about the unified
and transformative change we need”. 

With an accountability framework to monitor progress and
address challenges, the new strategy has clear benchmarks, and will encourage
more persons with disabilities to work in, and be better supported by, the UN.

Mr. Guterres cited last year’s first-ever UN Flagship Report on Disability and Development, which highlights core challenges, including disproportionate levels of poverty, lack of access to education, health services, employment and the under-representation of persons with disabilities in decision-making and political participation. 

For further details you can download a copy of the strategy here.