18.01.2015 Intense Advocacy Week in NYC

On 12-13 January in New York City members from the International Disability and Development Consortium (IDDC) and The International Disability Alliance (IDA) convened to have a post-2015 strategy meeting on how to collaborate in 2015, a very important year for global development. IDDC participants hailed from CBM International (Lars Bosselmann and me), Light for the World, ADD International, Atlas Alliance, Leonard Cheshire Disability, and Handicap International.

Our objectives were to identify and coordinate core messages, bottom lines and an advocacy strategy for the post-2015 development agenda negotiations, financing for development and other on-going processes as well as to identify programmes to be developed to prepare for the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda in conjunction with UN CRPD implementation. The meetings were fruitful and we discussed and created a joint strategy on how to move forward as a broad disability-focused coalition to make an effective and strategic impact in the post-2015 development agenda.

In addition to our strategy meetings, IDDC and IDA members met with various Member States to advocate for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the upcoming post-2015 intergovernmental negotiations. Specifically we spoke with Jamaica, Poland, Ethiopia, Ireland, Brazil, Peru, Chile, Malaysia, Japan, Antigua and Barbuda, Turkey, Austria, Iceland, Haiti, Singapore, Argentina, Cuba, Germany, Sweden, Norway and Denmark. In addition, we had meetings with UNDP and UN DESA, Statistics Division. In these meetings we gained valuable insight and conveyed our shared advocacy messages. Moreover, Tchaurea Fleury (IDA) and I lobbied in Spanish with the Chilean Mission and also Tchaurea Fleury, Rachele Tardi (Light for the World), and I at the Peruvian Mission, which was truly a fantastic experience. Also, Orsolya Bartha (IDA) assisted greatly in this week’s success. Thanks for the stellar teamwork, colleagues and friends!

Once again we were complimented on being a strong and effective advocacy group at the UN.  Jamaica told us that the advocacy coalition for persons with disabilities is one of the most visible and vocal groups along with the women and children’s lobby groups. Thank you, Jamaica and all the Member States with which we met!

I want to add that it was lovely to spend an intense advocacy week with my International Advocacy and Alliances (IAA) colleague Lars, as well as with our IDDC and IDA colleagues advocating for shared messages for the rights of persons with disabilities globally. Thanks, dear colleagues, and I hope to see you all again very soon!