International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2023: Every year on December 3rd, the world commemorates the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Established by the United Nations, this day aims to raise awareness and promote the rights and well-being of people with disabilities across the globe. In 2023, the theme revolves around calling for concerted action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) while ensuring the active participation of individuals with disabilities.
This year’s celebration holds significant importance as it marks an opportunity to highlight the challenges faced by people with disabilities and to advocate for their inclusion in all aspects of society. The World Health Organization (WHO) stands united with various partners and stakeholders in urging governments, organizations, and communities to work collectively towards creating a world that is more accessible, equitable, and inclusive for everyone, including persons with disabilities.
The observance of this day serves as a reminder of the ongoing barriers and discrimination faced by individuals with disabilities in their daily lives. Access to education, employment, healthcare, and social services remains a challenge for many. According to WHO, over a billion people – approximately 15% of the global population – live with some form of disability, and they often encounter obstacles that hinder their full participation in society.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations provide a comprehensive framework for addressing various global challenges, including those faced by people with disabilities. Goal 4 (Quality Education), Goal 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth), Goal 10 (Reduced Inequalities), Goal 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities), and Goal 17 (Partnerships for the Goals) are particularly pertinent to improving the lives of individuals with disabilities. Achieving these goals requires a concerted effort to remove barriers, provide equal opportunities, and ensure the full participation and empowerment of people with disabilities.
This year’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities calls for action at all levels – from policymakers and governments to communities and individuals – to uphold the rights of people with disabilities. It emphasizes the importance of creating inclusive environments that embrace diversity and foster equal opportunities for all.
It is crucial to recognize and celebrate the contributions of persons with disabilities to every facet of society. Their unique perspectives, talents, and experiences enrich our communities and should be valued and respected.
As the world marks this significant day, let us reaffirm our commitment to building a more inclusive and accessible world where every individual, regardless of their abilities, can live with dignity, participate fully, and contribute meaningfully to society. Let us work together to ensure that no one is left behind in our pursuit of a more just and equitable world for all.