ISLAMABAD - Demanding a transformative and accelerated action that is inclusive of people with disabilities (PWDs) and in line with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), political leadership has been urged to mainstream inclusion of persons with disabilities in all the initiatives towards achieving sustainable development goals (SGDs).
While addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, the representatives of international organization Sightsavers said that this demand has been made before the UN 2023 SDGs Summit in order to highlight the key issues and urgency of the matter.
Munazza Gillani, Country Director Sightsavers, informed that 15 percent of Pakistan’s population, around 36 million people, are suffering from some sort of disability, and the absence of an enabling environment and infrastructure is responsible for their isolation and exclusion from the socio-economic development. There is an urgent need to ensure their inclusion and this upcoming UN 2023 SDGs Summit provides an ideal platform to highlight the need of their inclusion.
She further stated that “The SDGs were meant to leave no one behind, and it’s crucial that we hold leaders accountable to that promise as we approach the UN 2023 SDGs Summit in September.
Abia Akram, chair of the National Forum for Women with Disabilities and Global Ambassador for Sightsavers’ campaign, underlined the urgency of the situation, stating, “We cannot afford to let the progress towards these critical goals derail further. Inclusivity must be a priority.”
Globally, Sightsavers extends a resounding call to global leaders to place the goal of inclusivity at the forefront of their agenda. They implore leaders to remember the commitment they made to the most vulnerable among us and make use of this final opportunity to realign the SDGs with their intended trajectory.
Asim Zafar, Secretary General of the Community Based Inclusive Development Network Pakistan, said that it is imperative to include the voices of people with disabilities and their representative organisations in the discussions around how to make SDGs implementation more inclusive and equitable for all.