2nd Session of the Working Group for people with disabilities

Report on the 2nd Session of the Working Group on Asia Pacific Decade for PwDs held in New Delhi during 2-3 March 2015 organized by UNESCAP

by Vijay Kant from Parivaar, India

It was an honor for Parivaar to represent Inclusion International Asia-Pacific Region at the Working Group Meeting of UNESCAP. Mr. Osamu Nagase, Representative of II Asia Pacific who is the official member of the Working Group could not make it to the meeting and requested Parivaar to represent Inclusion International. Lt. Col. Dr V K Gautam, President, Parivaar and Mr. Vijay Kant, COM, Parivaar represented Inclusion International Asia Pacific Forum.

The Second Session of the ESCAP Working Group on the Asian and Pacific Decade of Persons with Disabilities was organized by ESCAP and hosted by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India on March 2- 3 March 2015 in New Delhi, India.

The 2nd Working Group meeting was attended by Governments of Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mangolia, Pakistan, Philippines. Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Samoa, Thailand and Civil Society Organization (CSO) members representing ADF, APDPO United, Asia-Pacific Development Center on Disability, Asia Pacific Disability Forum, Central Asian Disability Forum, Daisy Consortium, DPI-AP, Inclusion International Asia-Pacific Forum, Pacific Disability Forum, Rehabilitation International, South Asian Disability Forum, World Blind Union, World Federation of the Deaf Regional Secretariat in Asia, World Federation of the Deaf and Blind, World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry.

Hon’ble Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment Sri. Thaawarchand Gehlot, inaugurated the session. Mr. Lov Varma, Secretary, MSJE,  Mr. Awanish Kumar Awasthi, Jt. Secretary, DDA, MSJE, Mr. Nagesh Kumar, Director, Sub-Regional Office, South & Southeast Asia (SRO-SSWA) and several officers of the Ministry were present.

We recommended that

Disability shall be included in the goal number one and three of Sustainable Development Goals(SDG) to be adopted by UN in September 2015. Inclusion International Asia & Pacific Forum has made written submission in the draft Operational Guide on Disability Inclusive Meetings (ESCAP). We strongly recommended that Self Advocates shall be part of the  ESCAP-WG meetings and sponsored by ESCAP Trust Fund.

Overall the meeting was well organized. The government of India was a really a gracious host and everyone appreciated the manner in which the MSJE looked after them. Parivaar was able to make its presence felt in the ESCAP Region. This meeting offered Parivaar an opportunity to have several informal interactions with leaders of the countries and civil society representatives in the region.