Making COSP Inclusive

This year, for the first time, the United Nations published an Easy Read Programme.

COSP Easy Read Programme

During the Opening of the Conference, our President, Sue Swenson, gave a short statement explaining that the only way to meet the goal of “Build disability-inclusive and participatory societies in the COVID context and beyond” is by making sure people with disabilities have the support they need to take part.

She shared the Listen Include Respect guidelines we have created with Down Syndrome International to help organisations make sure people with intellectual disabilities are included and can take part in meetings, information sessions, and decision making.

CRPD Committee Elections

During the first day of the Conference of States Parties (COSP), 9 candidates were elected to the CRPD Committee for the period 2023-2026. They were:

Ms. Rosemary KAYESS
[العربية | English | Français | Español]
Ms. Laverne JACOBS
[English | Français]
​Ms. Gertrude Oforiwa FEFOAME
[English | Français | Español]
​Mr. Alfred Kouadio KOUASSI
[English | Français]
Ivory Coast
Mr. Muhannad Salah AL-AZZEHJordan
Ms. Rehab Mohammed BORESLIKuwait
Ms. Amalia GAMIO RIOSMexico
Ms. Miyeon KIMRepublic of Korea
Mr. Markus SCHEFER
[English | Français | Español]

Side-Events from our Network

Over 600 people attended our side-events over COSP week, with plenty more engaging with the key messages on Twitter.

Launch of the Listen, Include, Respect Guidelines on Inclusive Participation

Self-advocates working on this project shared:

  • their experiences of being excluded
  • how the guidelines were created
  • how they can be used.

Key points

View the guidelines

Sometimes you are in a meeting and the Chair or the speakers don’t use accessible language. It is not easy to understand, and we sit in a room and don’t understand a word of what is going on.

Luis Gabriel Villarreal, Self-Advocate Council Member for the Americas

Supporting people with intellectual disabilities and their families in Ukraine

During this session Ukrainian organization of persons with intellectual disabilities and their families, and from organisations providing support in and out of Ukraine presented:

  • the views, experiences, and needs of people with intellectual disabilities and their families in Ukraine during the war. 
  • what support is missing and needs to be developed, both in Ukraine post-war, and for refugees with disabilities staying outside of Ukraine. 

Key points


Canary in a Coalmine: The Expansion of Medical Assistance in Dying in Canada

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada made it legal for people who
are not terminally ill to choose to die, provided they have a disability or disabling medical condition.

In this session, presenters explained that:

  • This law means people with disabilities are dying because they live in poverty, can’t secure affordable adequate housing, and are don’t want to live in an institution.
  • This is not fair and should not be legal
  • Other countries should learn from this experience and not allow their governments to follow.

Key points

People are calling and e-mailing our offices warning us every day that it’s easier to die with medical assistance than to get the support that they so desperately need.

Krista Carr, Inclusion Canada

Economic empowerment and entrepreneurship of persons with disabilities – Virtual Expo

During this session The International Disability & Development Consortium’s Livelihoods Task Group shared:

  • experiences from disability-inclusive approaches in COVID-19 response
  • recovery initiatives
  • how these have continued relevance beyond COVID-19

This session was broken into 5 booths which participants could drop in on.

Here is the recording of Booth 4: Creating workplaces that are inclusive of people with intellectual disabilities, presented by Kimber Bialik on behalf of Inclusion Works.

Key points

Employers Toolkit