Disability can be both a cause and a consequence of poverty. In total 15% of the world’s population live with a disability, 80% of those persons live in a developing country. Disability-inclusive development is crucial to alleviating world poverty as persons with disabilities are much more likely to experience adverse socio-economic outcomes, and are also more vulnerable to economic-related shocks.
The UN claim that the most pressing issue facing persons with disabilities is not the disability itself, but their vulnerability to poverty. Persons with disabilities regularly feature in the lowest quintile of any given development outcome. The World Bank estimates that 20% of the world’s poorest people experience some kind of disability. The OECD estimates that on average 19% of less-educated people experience some kind of disability. Disability does not just intersect with poverty, it drives it.
Addressing the rights and the needs of the most vulnerable must include addressing the specific needs of persons with disabilities. Development co-operation is beginning to recognise persons with disabilities as a demographic and disability-inclusive development programmes have gone a long way to ensuring that those with a disability do not also experience adverse outcomes - but there is much more that needs to be done.
The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has contributed enormously to recognising that the specific needs of persons with disabilities must be addressed. It places obligations on states to ensure that persons with disabilities are given a fair chance to a dignified and full life. Ireland’s ratification of the CRPD was an important step forward for disability-inclusive development in domestically.
- Dóchas Disability in Development Working Group Submission to the Public Consultation on Ireland's New International Development Policy (2018)
- Dóchas Disability in Development Working Group Submission to the JCFATD Review of Irish Aid (2017)
- Dóchas 'Achieving Global Disability Inclusion: Contribution of Ireland's Presidency of the Council of the EU' (2013)
- Dóchas Disability Inclusion Taskforce Submission to White Paper on Irish Aid (2013)
- Dóchas Disability in Development Working Group Evaluation Workshop (2012)
- Dóchas Disability in Development Working Group Conference Report 'Promoting Disability Inclusion in Ireland and the World' (2011)
- Dóchas Disability Inclusion Taskforce report to Irish Aid (2011)
- Dóchas 'The Time is Now: Ensuring Development for All' (2010)
- Dóchas 'Disability:Including the Poorest of the Poor' (2008)
Government and Multilateral Publications
- UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- WHO World Report on Disability (2011)
- The World Bank 'Making Quality Education Accessible to Children with Disabilities' (2015)
- Disability Federation of Ireland Submission to White Paper on Irish Aid (2013)
- Disability Aid Abroad Submission to White Paper on Irish Aid (2013)
- Norad 'Mainstreaming Disability in Development Cooperation (2011)
- DGCS 'Disability and International Cooperation and Development: A Review of Policies and Practices' (2010)