UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday called for the inclusion of people with disabilities in the global development agenda.
“When we secure the rights of people with disabilities, we move closer to achieving the central promise of the 2030 Agenda: to leave no one behind,” said Guterres in a video message for the International Day for Persons with Disabilities.
“On this International Day, I reaffirm the commitment of the United Nations to work with people with disabilities to build a sustainable, inclusive and transformative future in which everyone, including women, men, girls and boys with disabilities, can realize their potential.”
Although much remains to be done, there has been important progress in building an inclusive world for all, he said in the message, which was shown at an event to mark the International Day at UN Headquarters in New York.
Almost all UN member states have ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, he said, urging those that have not done so to ratify it without delay.
He also noted the launch of the UN Disability Inclusion Strategy in June and the Security Council’s first-ever resolution dedicated to the protection of persons with disabilities in armed conflict.
“We are determined to lead by example,” he said.
The International Day for Persons with Disabilities, which falls on Dec. 3, has been observed annually since 1992. This year’s theme is “Promoting the Participation of Persons with Disabilities and Their Leadership: Taking Action on the 2030 Development Agenda.”