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2020 Harkin International Disability Employment Summit. Realising the value of inclusion

THE HARKIN INSTITUTE
December 2020

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The 2020 Harkin Summit will explore the value of disability inclusion, particularly for businesses and employers. The challenges and opportunities before us today are clear. We must immediately build back the jobs that were lost or put at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic. As we look to the future, we must permanently fix the system so that disability inclusion moves from an aspirational goal to one that is an accepted and valued component of the business strategy.

This year, The Harkin Institute is proud to partner in offering this Summit with Caroline Casey and her organization, The Valuable 500, a business-to-business initiative catalyzing the influence of large private sector corporations in national and international markets.

Intersectionality between disability and Black Lives Matter

INTERNATIONAL LABOUR ORGANISATION (ILO)
November 2020

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The ILO Global Business and Disability Network in partnership with Ruh Global IMPACT organized a webinar on the Intersectionality between Disability and Black Lives Matter which was hold on November 12th, 2020.

We are witnessing unprecedented changes in society and these changes are impacting businesses and employers. Understanding the complexities of movements like #BlackLivesMatter and the intersectionalities of other inclusion efforts such as disability inclusion is critical. Inequalities and exclusion not only negatively impact on business, they can negatively impact your brand, your employees, your customers, and have other unexpected socioeconomic consequences.

This recording features Firehiwot Siyum Tadese, LaMondre Pough, Heather Dowdy and Kimberlee Archibald on a discussion on their professional experience as a person of colour in relation with disability.

Ensuring the right to quality inclusive education for persons with disabilities: From commitment to action

UNESCO
November 2020

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The international symposium "Ensuring the right to quality inclusive education for persons with disabilities: From commitment to action", co-organized by UNESCO, the Leonard Cheshire, and the Ministry of Education of Portugal brought together a wide range of stakeholders across the globe to discuss progress, successes achieved and challenges to ensure full participation and access to quality learning opportunities for all learners.

The symposium aims were to:

  • review persisting, as well as new challenges, due to the COVID-19 pandemic that are hindering the fulfilment of the right to inclusive education for learners with disabilities.
  • facilitate the exchange of experiences on factors influencing successful inclusive policies and practices for learners with disabilities and strengthen dialogue and cooperation amongst stakeholders at policy and practice levels.
  • explore how the inclusion of learners with disabilities in inclusive settings can be more effectively addressed by governments with regards to the commitments of Article 24 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), the CRPD General Comment 4 on article 24, and Sustainable Development 4 SDG 4, to ‘ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

The programme included:

Opening session - Accelerating efforts towards inclusive education for learners with disabilities. (Video recording: English - French - Spanish)

Session 1 - From legislation to inclusive practices: Re-designing policy frameworks, funding and monitoring arrangements across sectors for inclusive education for learners with disabilities. (Video recording: English - French - Spanish)

Session 2 - Revisiting the teaching and learning process to ensure access and participation of learners with disabilities.

Session 3 - Moving towards inclusive and safe learning environments, including by addressing violence and bullying against learners with disabilities.
 

Closing session - Rebuilding a Stronger Global Disability Inclusive Education System post COVID-19. (Video recording: English - French - Spanish)

Increasingly consulted, but not yet participating: IDA global survey report on participation of Organisations of Persons with Disabilities

INTERNATIONAL DISABILITY ALLIANCE (IDA)
November 2020

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This new report presents the findings of the first-ever global survey led by OPDs on their participation in decision making processes of governments, the UN system and funding agencies.

The IDA Global Survey is part of a strategy to hold decision-makers accountable for their commitments under Articles 4.3 and 32 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Based on testimonies collected from OPDs in 165 counties, the report assesses the quality, depth, scope and relevance of the OPDs participation in programmes and policies, and offers recommendations for governments, the UN system and funding agencies.

General orientation on sustainable livelihood for Filipinos with disabilities

LEONARD CHESHIRE DISABILITY PHILIPPINES FOUNDATION
October 2020

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This event was organised by Leonard Cheshire Disability Philippines Foundation Inc and Chambers of Massage Industry of Visually Impaired in partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development Sustainable Livelihood Program. The programme is outlined and followed by an Open Forum for questions and discussion.

Disability rights during the pandemic. A global report on findings of the COVID-19 Disability Rights Monitor

BRENNAN, Ciara Siobhan
October 2020

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This report presents the findings from a rapid global survey of persons with disabilities and other stakeholders which took place between April and August 2020. The organisations behind the study seek to “catalyse urgent action in the weeks and months to come,” as transmission rates of COVID-19 continue to rise in many countries and persons with disabilities are again subjected to restrictions which have already had severe consequences.

The report analyses over 2,100 responses to the survey from 134 countries around the world. The vast majority of responses were from individuals with disabilities and their family members. Within the questionnaire responses respondents provided more than 3,000 written testimonies documenting the experiences of persons with disabilities and their family members during the pandemic. The qualitative and quantitative data provide in-depth, comprehensive insights into the experiences of persons with disabilities and the consequences of government actions or inactions on the rights of persons with disabilities.

The report is organised around four themes which emerged during the process of analysing responses received to the survey. These themes are:

1. Inadequate measures to protect persons with disabilities in institutions

2. Significant and fatal breakdown of community supports

3. Disproportionate impact on underrepresented groups of persons with disabilities

4. Denial of access to healthcare

 

A webinar was held to mark the launch of the report

Inclusive Design: What if we built a world that was accessible to all?

McKINNON, Iain
CARR, Peter
PATRICK, Mikaela
MONGOLIA RESEARCH TEAM
ASTERINA, Nina
October 2020

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This webinar, hosted by Global Disability Innovation (GDI) hub, brings together a diverse panel of experts to discuss what inclusive design looks like in practice for them, who benefits and how it can offer methods to build a more accessible world that benefits all of us.

 

Speakers presentations were:

  • What inclusive design means to GDI Hub and why it matters, drawing on our experience working in both the UK and globally
  • An overview of inclusive design of the built environment in the UK and Kenya, including the role of access panels to embed the views of disabled people in planning and decision-making
  • An introduction to GDI Hub’s AT2030 programme including our Inclusive Infrastructure research sub-programme that is conducting six global case studies in LMIC cities around the world over the next 2-3 years.
  • The challenges and opportunities for an accessible Mongolia and the importance of Disabled People’s Organisations (DPO) engagement in decision-making
  • The importance of inclusive planning processes for accessible cities in Indonesia

Disability inclusion in the United Nations system - Report of the Secretary General

SECRETARY-GENERAL OF THE UNITED NATIONS
October 2020

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When launching the Strategy in June 2019, the Secretary-General stated that the United Nations would lead by example and raise its standards and performance on disability inclusion across all pillars of its work, from Headquarters to the field. The present report outlines the first steps on the path to achieving transformative and lasting change for persons with disabilities across the United Nations system

 

The report is organized into seven sections. Following the introduction, an overview of the advances made in the United Nations on disability inclusion, including the adoption of the Strategy, is provided in section II; the first year of implementation of the Strategy at the entity and country levels is reported on in section III; coronavirus disease (COVID-19) response and recovery efforts are the focus of section IV; the overarching actions for implementation of the Strategy are considered in section V; challenges and opportunities are highlighted in section VI; and the conclusion and recommendations for consideration by the General Assembly are contained in section VII. The report provides an analysis of information from 57 United Nations entities1 that reported under the Strategy ’s entity accountability framework and seven United Nations country teams that completed the accountability scorecard on disability inclusion as part of a targeted roll-out.

Inclusion of persons with disabilities in the COVID-19 response: Applying the IASC Guidelines

Professionals in Humanitarian Assistance and Protection (PHAP)
September 2020

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On 17 September 2020, during a webinar organized jointly by ICVA, PHAP, IASC, and the Reference Group on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action, we discussed how the IASC Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action can be implemented in the COVID-19 response. We started with a presentation of the recent note produced by the Reference Group and endorsed by the IASC on this topic, followed by a discussion of challenges in the current response and ways to overcome them.

The webinar shared practical examples of how response to COVID-19 in humanitarian contexts has been made more inclusive of persons with disabilities, drawing on learning from the past 6+ months to present concrete actions that humanitarian actors can take, in partnership with local organizations of persons with disabilities. The webinar aimed to provide a space for learning and exchange of experience between organizations of persons with disabilities, NGOs, UN entities, and other humanitarian actors.

Inclusion of persons with disabilities in social protection for COVID-19 recovery and beyond

COTE, Alex
BALASUBRAMANIAN, Meenakshi
WANGARE, Fatma
HUDA. Karishma
DOS SANTOS, Joaozito
O'BRIEN, Felicity
September 2020

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The COVID-19 crisis has magnified the barriers and inequalities faced by persons with disabilities. Consultation with organisations representing persons with disabilities across regions highlighted the limitation of social protection systems in LMICs to provide adequate support due to lack of social protection schemes, low coverage, and inadequacy of existing schemes. There is little in the way of publicly funded community support services and in some contexts an overreliance on residential institutions, whose users have been disproportionally represented among COVID-19 fatalities. 

In the midst of the crisis, countries have been struggling with inaccessible information (e.g sign language), the lack of universal schemes, and national disability registry for broad outreach and fast relief.

The webinar aimed at providing a global overview of the social protection response for persons with disabilities and their families as well as the different key social protection issues to consider for an inclusive COVID-19 recover

Understanding disability extra costs

CENTRE FOR INCLUSIVE POLICY
September 2020

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Extra costs incurred by people with disabilitites are illustrated through case studies of children, adults and older people with disabilities. 

Product Narratives: the challenges of supply and demand-side barriers for priority AT

HOLLOWAY, Cathy
OLDFREY, Ben
END FINEBURG, Alison
SEGHERS, Frederic
SOENDERGAARD, Dennis
September 2020

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This Disability Innovation Live session, looked at the Assistive Technology (AT) Product Narratives (PNs). The Product Narratives were developed by the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) under the FCDO funded AT2030 programme, led by GDI Hub, in support of the ATscale Strategy.

These PNs set out what we know about the state of the global market for each AT product, and identify global recommendations for how to address some of the barriers to access currently experienced in low and middle-income countries. In this session, we hear from the experts about what the PNs are, how they will inform global policy, and how we hope they will help us reach more people with life-changing AT

COVID-19, Amplifying Voices: Our Lives, Our Say: Learning from COVID-19 through the experiences of blind and partially sighted persons across the world

ZAYED, Yana
et al
August 2020

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The World Blind Union (WBU) conducted a study to examine the extent to which COVID-19 pandemic has exposed some deep structural inequalities in society. Data gathered from the study is evidencing that persons with disabilities, older persons, and persons from lower socioeconomic status backgrounds are among those hardest hit by the pandemic. While this report puts a spotlight on the voices of blind and partially sighted persons, many of the experiences shared strongly resonate with numerous other studies that are also highlighting how marginalised groups have been affected by this crisis. Through this report, WBU hopes to raise awareness on the specifics of what those challenges have meant in reality for its constituents, as well as shed light on what have been effective resilience strategies for them. The study was made possible with the support of CBM Global

To understand the situation of our constituents, the World Blind Union (WBU) conducted a global survey in collaboration with key stakeholders. In April 2020, the WBU launched an open online survey for seven weeks in Spanish, French and English, seeking information from blind and partially sighted persons on how COVID-19 was impacting their day to day life. 853 people participated in the survey. The respondents expressed in their own words how their lives had been and continue to be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. This report is a compilation of those voices. It depicts the ways in which COVID-19 response measures taken by state and non-state actors have created additional barriers and challenges for blind and partially sighted people. It also includes powerful testimonies on how people have shown resilience in the face of adversity.

 

 

Disability, stigma & the role of innovation - Disability innovation live

AUSTIN, Vicki
CAREW, Matthew
MIRZOYANTS, Anastasia
BARBARESCHI, Giulia
August 2020

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This webinar focussed on the role of stigma in preventing disability inclusion, and what enables it to be overcome, focused on innovative and creative methods

The speakers talked about:

  • Culture, Paralympic legacy & how innovation can change mindsets
  • Stigma research incorporating the perspectives of persons with disabilities & disability inclusive research processes
  • Kenyan youth & the perception of people with disabilities
  • Assistive technology, identity & the role of innovation

Discussion about inclusive education considering IDA report "What an inclusive, equitable, quality education means to us" and Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report 2020

Hosted by: INTERNATIONAL DISABILITY ALLIANCE (IDA)
July 2020

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A discussion of inclusive education based on Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report: "Inclusion and education: All means all. Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report 2020", published Jun 2020 and IDA report:  "What an inclusive, equitable, quality education means to us", published Mar 2020.

Microsoft at #DisabilityAdvantage: 2020 Disability:IN Annual Conference

NADELLA, Satya
LAY-FLURRIE, Jenny
July 2020

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The CEO of Microsoft talks about the cultural embedding of accessibility in the company. Topics covered include: building accessibility into technology products; remote working and schooling (particularly in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic); skilling and jobs for people with disabilities; the growth of captioning; the US Americans with Disability Act (ADA); intersectionality; inclusivity; and the future of AI products.

The rights of persons with disabilities in the context of climate change - panel discussion. 14th Meeting, 44th Regular Session Human Rights Council

UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL
July 2020

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The Panel focused on good practices and lessons learned in the promotion and protection of the rights of persons with disabilities in the context of the adverse impact of climate change. Its main objectives were to understand the benefits of disability-inclusive climate action and to identify opportunities for international cooperation in mitigation and adaptation actions which promote and protect the rights of persons with disabilities.

The panellists of the event were:

  • Ms Catalina Devandas Aguilar, Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities
  • Ms Amalia A. Decena, President of Handicapables Association of Cagayan, Philippines
  • Mr Sébastien Jodoin, Assistant Professor at the McGill University Faculty of Law and Canada Research Chair in Human Rights and the Environment
  • Ms Deborah Iyute Oyuu, Programme Officer at the National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda

Making Inclusion the New Normal: Inclusive Workplace Practices as COVID19 Response. Friends and partners from Project Inclusion, Virtualahan, and Leonard Cheshire Disability Philippines Foundation (LCDPF).

HUMANITY & INCLUSION (HI)
June 2020

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Exploring what the new normal will be when it comes to working, the risk in the response to the current crisis is that persons with disabilities will be left behind. How do we ensure that no one gets left behind in the “new normal” of working?

This session Making Inclusion the New Normal: Inclusive Workplace Practices as a Covid-19 Response as we discuss how we find new ways of working where no one gets left behind. #MakingInclusionTheNewNormal

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