Mainstreaming disability within the UN Millennium Development Goals

Professor Nora Groce (Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre at UCL) chaired the United Nations Expert Group Meeting on Mainstreaming Disability in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), at the World Health Organization Headquarters in Geneva.

The meeting, co-sponsored by the Department of Economic & Social Affairs in the UN Secretary General’s Office and the World Health Organization, brought together 11 experts on disability policy and selected representatives from UN agencies, as well as from governmental and non-governmental organisations.

Currently there is no attention to persons with disabilities in the MDGs, despite the fact that an estimated one in five of the world’s poorest people are disabled.

Professor Groce and colleagues have been asked by the UN to work closely with staff to draft a formal report and set of recommendations and guidelines for inclusion of persons with disabilities as part of the current review of the MDGs scheduled for 2010, and as part of the planning now underway in the UN for the scheduled revision of the MDGs in 2015.

To find out more, use the links at the top of this article.

UCL context
The Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre at UCL aims to:

  • undertake field research studies in participation with Leonard Cheshire Disability programmes implemented globally, and partners of the Global Alliance
  • provide expertise for policy makers and other stakeholders (NGOs, UN agencies, other donor agencies) primarily in developing countries in areas such as legislation, inclusion, empowerment and mainstreaming within existing policies and
  • participate in academic networks, and to share research experience and knowledge through field surveys, publications and teaching about disabled people, vulnerable groups and international development.

The centre is consolidating a body of research about disability issues in conflict and emergency situations, and in transitional and developmental contexts.

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