President Barack Obama released a presidential proclamation December 2 for International Day of Persons with Disabilities, calling on improved efforts to press forward with ending discrimination and removing barriers for all people across the globe.
“We know from the historic struggle for disability rights in the United States that disability inclusion is an ongoing effort, and many challenges remain in securing fundamental human rights for all persons with disabilities around the world,” Obama stated.
This year’s theme for the day is “Together for a better world for all: Including persons with disabilities in development.”
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon also released a statement, stressing the vast barriers faced by individuals with disabilities worldwide in everything from poverty and employment, to health care and primary school attendance.
“This year’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities reminds us that development can only be sustainable when it is equitable, inclusive and accessible for all,” he stated. “Persons with disabilities need therefore to be included at all stages of development processes, from inception to monitoring and evaluation.”