SDDC is a Swiss based network advocating for the rights and inclusion of persons with disabilities in Switzerland's international cooperation.
How can Switzerland ensure the rights of persons with disabilities in the Global South?
No guidelines, no priority. Switzerland needs guidelines to inform its work on the inclusion of persons with disabilities in its international cooperation. Current efforts on disability inclusion are small scale, ad-hoc and mostly segregating.
Nothing about us, without us! Switzerland must ensure the full and active participation of persons with disabilities throughout all processes affecting them, including in its international cooperation. Arrangements must be made to enable their participation.
What isn’t counted, doesn’t count. Switzerland has committed itself to be a leader on data collection, but it is not systematically collecting and disaggregating data on disability in its international programmes.
Leave no one behind in humanitarian crises. Persons with disabilities are disproportionately affected in humanitarian crises. Switzerland committed itself to making its humanitarian action inclusive of persons with disabilities, but it is not clear how it is living up to its commitment.
What isn’t budgeted for, doesn’t get done. Switzerland must sufficiently budget for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in its international cooperation and must commit itself not to finance programs and services that segregate persons with disabilities from the community.
CBM Switzerland recently launched a Factsheet on CRPD implementation in SWITZERLAND, with a focus on disability inclusiveness of development and humanitarian aid. The Factsheet was written by Polly Meeks, independent consultant. The Factsheet covers areas related to disability inclusion in Switzerland’s international cooperation, including strategy and leadership, engagement with organisations of persons with disabilities, internal capacity, management and reporting, and spending. It also looks at CRPD implementation within Switzerland as well as the coherence between domestic and international CRPD implementation.
A webinar was held to launch the Factsheet. A recording of the webinar, with captions and International Sign Language interpretation can be found here.
CBM Switzerland is pleased to announce the launch of a podcast series on disability inclusive development, hosted by the Medicus Mundi Health for All Podcast. The series portrays six people working in the field of disability inclusion. They address topics ranging from research and evidence in disability – to access to healthcare and violence against women and girls with disabilities – to digital inclusion. Every two weeks a new Episode is released between the months of September and October 2021.
The first episode features Hannah Kuper, Director of the International Centre for Evidence in Disability at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, who speaks about the importance of data and research on disability. Disability affects 1 billion people worldwide, 80% of whom live in low- and middle-income countries. Data is scarce but has improved greatly in recent years. Yet people with disabilities lack access to health care, are more likely to be poor and more likely to be discriminated against. They often have a higher need for health care, but also more difficulties in accessing the relevant services. Systematic data collection and analysis is crucial to ensure that people with disabilities have equal access to all services. “Nothing About Us Without Us!” is as crucial in research as in other project development phases for people with disability.
You can listen to the Podcast on the Medicus Mundi website, Spotify, Apple Podcast, You Tube or Deezer. A written transcript of each episode is also provided.
The SDDC published an article in the June 2021 issue of the Medicus Mundi Switzerland (MMS) Bulletin on the role of Swiss international cooperation in advancing disability inclusion. It outlines Switzerland’s obligations under the CRPD in its international cooperation and humanitarian action, the current state of disability inclusion in Swiss international cooperation, and the recommendations of the SDDC. The contribution features as part of the MMS Bulletin #158 on Inclusion in international cooperation: commitment and reality.