Lessons learnt for the Agenda 2030 and persons with disabilities.
The Corona pandemic presents the world with unimaginable challenges. What began as a health risk has quickly led to consequences for other areas, putting education systems, labour markets and, finally, social co-existence to the test.
Current events underscore the vastly different resources (financial, human, or infrastructural) countries are using to respond to such a threat. Low- and middle-income countries are rarely able to rely on resilient state systems. The fear is that the pandemic will manifest existing inequalities within and between countries, and that groups that are already discriminated against will be disproportionately affected by the crisis.
Consistent implementation of the Agenda 2030 would have mitigated the pandemic
With the Agenda 2030, the international community has already agreed on a comprehensive framework for sustainable development in 2015. If its principles and objectives had been consistently implemented since its adoption, the pandemic would have had less dramatic consequences for many people in the present.
This is particularly true of people with disabilities, one of the world's largest structurally disadvantaged minorities. In total, of the world’s one billion people with disabilities, 80 percent of them live in low- and middle-income countries. Their national political systems must ensure that they are taken care of, during and even after the Coronavirus pandemic.
Download the policy paper
Five assumptions for strengthening societies during the COVID-19 crisis
In our policy paper, based on the following five assumptions, we present the lessons the COVID-19 crisis teaches us for the implementation of the Agenda 2030 and which Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) significantly increase the resilience of societies.
- Lack of access to health services and a lack of tackling existing burdens of illness put people in vulnerable situations at a higher risk in the crisis
- Shortcomings in social and civil protection systems require targeted intervention in favour of people with disabilities in this acute crisis
- Full social and economic participation of people in vulnerable situations is the key to their resilience in crises
- A barrier-free environment can enable self-determined and independent action of people with disabilities
- The participation of people with disabilities in social design and decision-making processes is crucial before, during and after crisis situations.
Read more about our work during the Coronavirus pandemic
To support our partners, a “Disability Inclusive Community Action – COVID-19 Matrix” has been developed to provide guidance on possible action points in community development and mobilization in relation to COVID-19 preparedness and response.
Similarly, a guidance note for COVID-19 has been developed to support our eye health partners and communities they serve, in their efforts to combat this global health crisis.
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