New United Nations fund to boost action on disability rights

08 Dec 2011

New York – United Nations agencies have partnered on a new fund which will promote disability rights by supporting countries to improve their policies, data gathering and service delivery to persons with disabilities.

The UN Partnership to Promote the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Fund launched today, aims to facilitate dialogue between governments and disabled people organisations in order to boost national action to address discrimination and marginalization.

“The realisation that disability and development are intertwined persuaded Member States in 2006 to adopt the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,” said Rebeca Grynspan, Associate Administrator at the UN Development Programme (UNDP), which will serve as the Fund’s technical secretariat.

“This landmark treaty gave the disability rights movement a powerful new tool, offering what Kofi Annan called a ‘new era’ where disabled people no longer endured discrimination and attitudes that have prevailed for too long. This fund builds on the international community’s promise to end the exclusion of these people from society,” Grynspan added.

More than one billion people, or about 15 percent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability, according to the World Report on Disability, published earlier this year by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Bank.

The Australian Government has already committed AUD 2 million to the Fund, (approximately USD 2 million), with more contributions expected in coming months.  

At the launch of the Fund in New York, representatives from Finland, Sweden, as well as the government of the state of São Paulo in Brazil also committed to contribute to the Fund.

The agencies partnering on this initiative include the International Labour Organisation (ILO), The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA), UNDP, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and WHO.

Contact Information

For more information regarding the UN Partnership to Promote the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Multi-donor Trust Fund, please contact:

Emanuele Sapienza; Coordinator, UNPRPD Fund Technical Secretariat;
Email: emanuele.sapienza@undp.org Tel: +1.212.906.5014