Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action: What Next after the Guidelines?

The IASC has endorsed guidelines for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action. In a webinar they will discuss how to implement these important guidelines, providing practical guidance on including people with disabilities into humanitarian programming and coordination. They will also explore ways to develop quality initiatives that are inclusive of people with disabilities and explain the roles and responsibilities of organizations regarding disability inclusion.

 

Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action: What Next after the Guidelines?...

An introduction to the guidelines for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action and how they can be implemented in practice....
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Background Information

Persons with disabilities are among the most marginalized people in crisis-affected communities and disproportionately affected by conflict and disasters. In some contexts, their mortality rate is two to four times higher than that of persons without disabilities and persons with disabilities face substantial barriers to accessing assistance. A recent study found that 92% of humanitarian actors think that persons with disabilities are not properly taken into account in humanitarian response and are often considered only as recipients of aid and not as actors in the response.

That is also why delivering better for persons with disabilities was part of the discussions of the World Humanitarian Summit and its follow-up commitments, including through the Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action (2016). In 2016, the United Nations Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Working Group agreed to the establishment of a Task Team on the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action, which drafted the Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action. The IASC Guidelines were drafted through a large number of consultations with member States, organizations of persons with disabilities, civil society organizations working with persons with disabilities and/or in humanitarian action, and UN agencies. They were endorsed by the IASC Principals in October 2019 and launched in New York in November 2019 and in Geneva in February 2020. At the same time, a Reference Group was established to continue to bring together key stakeholders for coordinated efforts on the implementation of the IASC Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and provide support, among others, their dissemination and to develop supporting tools and resources.

 

As one of the few global initiatives where the persons concerned have been directly involved in the drafting of a tool serving intervention at their benefit, these Guidelines are a crucial step forward to achieve disability-inclusive humanitarian action. They serve the following four objectives:

  • To provide practical guidance on including persons with disabilities in humanitarian programming and coordination;
  • To increase capacity among humanitarian stakeholders to develop and implement quality programs that are inclusive of persons with disabilities;
  • To describe the roles and responsibilities of humanitarian stakeholders to include persons with disabilities in humanitarian action; and
  • To increase and improve the participation of persons with disabilities and organization of persons with disabilities in preparedness, response and recovery.

However, what will make the real difference for persons with disabilities is how these guidelines are implemented in practice. Humanitarian actors need to translate the IASC Guidelines into concrete improvements in their daily activities, continuing to work closely with persons with disabilities and their representative organizations.

Persons with disabilities in humanitarian response: Guidelines for inclusive humanitarian action

This webinar recording introduces the guidelines for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action and discusses how they can be implemented in practice. The webinar was organized by ICVA, PHAP, and the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC).

Podcast - Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action: What Next after the Guidelines?

The following are the speakers.

Jasmine
Jasmine Moussa
Counsellor, Legal and Humanitarian Affairs, Permanent Mission of Egypt to the UN in Geneva
Jasmine
Jasmine Moussa
Counsellor, Legal and Humanitarian Affairs, Permanent Mission of Egypt to the UN in Geneva
Jasmine
Jasmine Moussa
Counsellor, Legal and Humanitarian Affairs, Permanent Mission of Egypt to the UN in Geneva
Jasmine
Jasmine Moussa
Counsellor, Legal and Humanitarian Affairs, Permanent Mission of Egypt to the UN in Geneva

The following are the co-hosts.

AngharadLaing300(1)
Angharad Laing
Executive Director, PHAP​
ShuteriqiMirela450
Mirela Shuteriqi
Director of Policy, ICVA
Resources on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

ICVA
10 May 2016
Charter on inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action
Subject/ Cross-cutting issues / Learning /
charter
Description

Key principles to make humanitarian action inclusive of persons with disabilities.

ICVA
19 November 2019
IASC Guidelines, Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action, 2019
Subject/ Cross-cutting issues / Learning /
IASC Guidelines on the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action, 2019 thumbnail
Description

The guidelines set out essential actions that humanitarian actors must take in order to effectively identify and respond to the needs and rights of persons with disabilities who are most at risk of being left behind in humanitarian settings.