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Life Becomes Harder: Intersectional Feminist Lens to Dis/abled Experience of Women in Afghanistan during Covid 19 Pandemic and Post Covid Development Context

SHAJAHAN, Sharin
2021

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More than 40 years of war, ethnic conflict, violence and poverty have made Afghanistan a country where at least one in five live with a serious physical, sensory, intellectual, or psychosocial disability. Women with disabilities in Afghanistan are considered to be ‘doubly stigmatized’ due to gender inequality and disability stigmatization, and are often hidden from the social and political aspects of life. Although in the post-Taliban era, development interventions backed by international aid have been designed to include women with disabilities, their intersectionalities cutting across class, ethnicity, region, different types of impairments and other positionalities have not been explored to address different needs, barriers and inequalities across various regions. In this context, the Covid 19 crisis has made the lives of Afghan women with disabilities harder due to gender discrimination, stigma and shame, unemployment, lack of mobility, lack of awareness, and insufficient institutional support and infrastructure coupled with widespread feelings of insecurity resulting from conflict and terrorist attacks. Based on both primary and secondary data, this paper will shed a feminist intersectional insight into the plight of women with dis/abled experience during the Covid 19 pandemic in the complex political and social terrain of Afghanistan. The paper will also explore visions for designing interventions aimed at integrating women with disabilities in post Covid development plans.

Disability inclusion annual report 2020

UNITED NATIONS RELIEF AND WORKS AGENCY (UNRWA)
December 2020

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The number of Palestine refugees registered by UNRWA recently grew to 5.7 million (from 5.5 million in 2019) in all its five field of operations in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Gaza and the West Bank. Among them are Palestine refugees with disabilities, who have long-term impairments, which in interactions with attitudinal, institutional, and environmental barriers prevent their full and effective participation on an equal basis with others in society. Persons with disabilities constitute an estimated 15 per cent of the global population1, and may constitute a higher percentage in humanitarian contexts, such as Syria, the West Bank and Gaza, in particular, which are UNRWA fields of operations.

 

The main actions undertaken in 2020 discussed in the report are:

  • targeted and disability-specific services for persons with disabilities
  • disability inclusion through programmes
  • inter-agency coordination
  • international protection advocacy

Global Humanitarian Overview 2021

OCHA UNITED NATIONS OFFICE FOR THE COORDINATION OF HUMANITARIAN AFFAIRS (OCHA)
December 2020

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A comprehensive, authoritative and evidence-based overview of the current state and future trends in humanitarian action with three sections: Global Trends; Inter-Agency Coordinated Appeals; and Delivering Better. There is a short section on people with disabilities in Global Trends.

 

Landmine Monitor 2020

INTERNATIONAL CAMPAIGN TO BAN LANDMINES – CLUSTER MUNITION COALITION (ICBL-CMC)
November 2020

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This is the 22nd annual Landmine Monitor report. Landmine Monitor 2020 provides a global overview of the landmine situation. Chapters on developments in specific countries and other areas are available in online Country Profiles at www.the-monitor.org/cp. Landmine Monitor covers mine ban policy, use, production, trade, and stockpiling; includes information on developments and challenges in assessing and addressing the impact of mine contamination and casualties through clearance, risk education, and victim assistance; and documents international and national support for mine action. This report focuses on calendar year 2019, with information included up to October 2020 where possible.

 

The victim assistance coordination section covers the following topics: Participation of victims and their representative organizations; A relevant government agency to coordinate victim assistance; Multi-sectoral efforts in line with the CRPD; National referral mechanisms; Centralized database with needs and challenges

Cluster Munition Monitor 2020

INTERNATIONAL CAMPAIGN TO BAN LANDMINES – CLUSTER MUNITION COALITION (ICBL-CMC)
November 2020

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this report provides a 10-year review of developments in addressing the global cluster munitions problem, with information included up to September 2020. Profiles published online provide additional country-specific findings on these topics. Thematic maps are also published in the report and available online.

As well as a 10-year review, Cluster Munition Monitor 2020 covers cluster munition ban policy, use, production, transfers, and stockpiling globally, and also contains information on the impact of cluster munition contamination and casualties, as well as developments and challenges in addressing such impact through clearance, risk education and victim assistance.

 

11th Annual edition

If not now, when? Keeping promises to older people affected by humanitarian crises

McGIVERN, Verity
November 2020

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This report looks at the extent to which older people’s rights are being upheld in emergencies and their needs met. The picture it paints is a bleak one. Although some efforts are being made to support older people, overall, the humanitarian system is failing by the standards it has set itself.
 
The report draws on the findings of needs assessments carried out by HelpAge International in the 13 months to the end of 2019. We interviewed 8,883 people aged 50 to 80 - plus affected by natural disasters, conflict or socioeconomic crises in 11 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.
 
Since the data was collected, COVID-19 has swept across the globe. The pandemic has both increased the need for humanitarian aid and disrupted its delivery. The response to coronavirus has thrown into stark relief the gulf between the risks older people are facing and the level of support available to them. The findings in this report provide important lessons for improving this response
 

Death sentence to civilians: The long-term impact of explosive weapons in populated areas in Yemen

BOTTOMLEY, Alison
SALAVERT, Lise
et al
May 2020

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In five years of war, Yemen has experienced every manner of explosive weapons—aerial bombs and missiles, artillery, mortars, and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and much more. The explosions destroy bridges, ports, roads, hospitals, water systems, and generate long lasting civilian harm. When explosive weapons strike roads and bridges, they greatly increase the time it takes to re-supply cities. Such damage cuts deeply into food and water access, and has negative effects on population health.

The report highlights six case studies, showing the extent and impact of such bombings. One case study looks at the long-term impact on specific populations including: internally displaced persons; persons with disabilities; women and children.

Persons with disabilities in armed conflict: Inclusive protection perspectives

UNITED NATIONS MINE ACTION SERVICE (UNMAS)
May 2020

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This virtual side event was held on 28 May 2020, coinciding with the UN Security Council Open Debate on the Protection of Civilians. It focused on the disproportionate challenges facing persons with disabilities in humanitarian, conflict, and post-conflict settings. Chaired by the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Ms. Catalina Devandas Aguilar, this discussion shared insights from speakers and panelists from the Governments of Poland and the United Kingdom, the European Union, UNMAS, Humanity & Inclusion (H.I.), the International Disability Alliance (IDA) and others.

 

By presenting the situation in Syria, Humanitarian Policy and Advocacy Manager for HI Syria response Bahia Zrikem highlighted the fundamental role Council Members should play in ensuring that all civilians, including persons with disabilities, are fully protected during hostilities, in line with International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law obligations, including the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), and the UNSC Resolution 2475 on protecting persons with disabilities in armed conflict.

 

Delivering trauma and rehabilitation interventions to women and children in conflict settings: a systematic review

JAIN, Reena P
METEKE, Sarah
GAFFEY, Michelle F
et al
May 2020

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In recent years, more than 120 million people each year have needed urgent humanitarian assistance and protection. Armed conflict has profoundly negative consequences in communities. Destruction of civilian infrastructure impacts access to basic health services and complicates widespread emergency responses. The number of conflicts occurring is increasing, lasting longer and affecting more people today than a decade ago. The number of children living in conflict zones has been steadily increasing since the year 2000, increasing the need for health services and resources. This review systematically synthesised the indexed and grey literature reporting on the delivery of trauma and rehabilitation interventions for conflict-affected populations.

A systematic search of literature published from 1 January 1990 to 31 March 2018 was conducted across several databases. Eligible publications reported on women and children in low and middle-income countries. Included publications provided information on the delivery of interventions for trauma, sustained injuries or rehabilitation in conflict-affected populations. A total of 81 publications met the inclusion criteria, and were included in the review.

 

BMJ Global Health 2020;5:e001980

http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjgh-2019-001980

COVID-19 and Humanitarian Crisis

2020

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A COVID-19 Humanitarian platform to gather, curate, analyze, interpret and disseminate COVID-19-specific and -sensitive interventions that are being implemented in a variety of humanitarian settings.

The goal is to facilitate the sharing of context-specific field experiences about how humanitarian programs are responding to and being adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic. This website will host both technical guidelines as well as operational field experiences from humanitarian actors in different settings.

“Disability Is Not Weakness” Discrimination and barriers facing women and girls with disabilities in Afghanistan

GOSSMAN, Patricia
April 2020

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Everyday barriers that Afghan women and girls with disabilities face are described.  Decades of conflict have decimated government institutions and development efforts have failed to reach many communities most in need. Obtaining access to health care, education, and employment, along with other basic rights, is particularly difficult for Afghan women and girls with disabilities, who face both gender discrimination and stigma and barriers associated with their disability.

 

This report is based primarily on research by Human Rights Watch researchers from April 2018 through January 2020 in Kabul, Mazar-e Sharif, and Herat, Afghanistan. 23 interviews with women with disabilities and 3 interviews with family members of women and girls with disabilities were conducted. 14 healthcare and education professionals were interviewed, including representatives from the United Nations and international and local nongovernmental organizations providing services to persons with disabilities in Afghanistan

COVID-19 and International Humanitarian Law

INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE RED CROSS (ICRC)
March 2020

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International humanitarian law (IHL) is a key legal framework that provides crucial safeguards to people affected by armed conflicts. This overview summarizes some of the main provisions of IHL that may be particularly relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic

Early rehabilitation in conflicts and disasters

LATHIA, Charmi
SKELTON, Peter
CLIFT, Zoe
Eds
January 2020

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When emergencies strike, there is a huge surge in the need for Early Rehabilitation. Early Rehabilitation for patients with traumatic injuries in conflicts and disasters is now recognised as being an integral part of a patient’s recovery. However, the majority of rehabilitation professionals in countries that experience such emergencies do not have all the skills needed to treat all of the injuries. HI, in collaboration with leading organisations (ICRC, MSF-France, CBM, Livability & the WHO), has created this educational resource package to fill this gap

Each chapter of this handbook has been written by experts in their field. It includes pictures and evidence based treatment protocols to help rehabilitation professionals around the world to delivery high quality early rehabilitation intervention. Chapters included are:

  • Key Challenges in Delivering Early Rehabilitation in Conflicts and Disasters
  • Early Rehabilitation Patient Assessment and Treatment - the Basics
  • Early Rehabilitation of Fractures 
  • Early Rehabilitation of Peripheral Nerve Injuries
  • Early Rehabilitation of Amputees
  • Early Rehabilitation of Acquired Brain Injuries
  • Early Rehabilitation of Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Early Rehabilitation of Burns

Videos accompany each of the chapters. The handbook contents are directly linked to modules taught on disasterready.org where there are additional accompanying resources designed to be used in conflict and disasters settings

Stronger together in crises: Education Cannot Wait (ECW) 2019 Annual results report

EDUCATION CANNOT WAIT
2020

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Education Cannot Wait reaffirmed itself as the global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crisis in 2019, building a global movement with strategic partners to provide children and youth caught in armed conflicts, forced displacement, climate change-induced disasters and protracted crises with the safety, hope and opportunity of an education.

Working with our broad range of partners, ECW had active grants in 29 crisis-affected countries in 2019. This report captures the results delivered through these investments to support inclusive and equitable quality education for the millions of girls and boys caught in humanitarian crises.

In 2019, ECW reached 10,473 children with disabilities, bringing the number of children with disabilities reached since the Fund’s inception to about 23,600. A short case study is provided about inclusive education for children with disabilities in Uganda

Inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action. Case studies collection 2019. 39 examples of field practices, and learnings from 20 countries, for all phases of humanitarian response

PALMER, Tom
et al
December 2019

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Published at the same time as the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action, this report aims to support their uptake and promote learning by example. This report presents 39 short case studies on inclusive practices for persons with disabilities in humanitarian action and disaster risk reduction (DRR). It is designed for humanitarian stakeholders with limited experience of working with and for persons with disabilities, as well as for organizations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) planning to engage in humanitarian action and DRR. The report draws lessons from field practices, but does not provide technical guidance. The IASC Guidelines are the reference document to seek in-depth theoretical and technical information

 

The case studies focus on:

  • Inclusive disaster risk reduction and preparedness
  • Collecting and using disability disaggregated data for assessments and programming.
  • Participation of persons with disabilities and their representative organizations in humanitarian response and recovery
  • Removing barriers to access humanitarian assistance and protection.
  • Influencing coordination mechanisms and resource mobilization to be inclusive

 

The evidence presented in this report was identified in 2017-2018 through a desk review of publicly available reports and internal documents on projects implemented by CBM, HI and IDA members, as well as their partners and affiliate members. Field visits to Lebanon, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, and the Philippines conducted in 2018 also informed the case-study collection and documentation

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