Capturing Institutional commitments towards Disability Inclusion during COVID-19

Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week
“Nothing about us Without Us”’. During the Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week, IFRC and ICRC held a briefing session to highlight the Movement's commitments to ensuring inclusion of persons living with disabilities against the backdrop of COVID-19.

The briefing session highlighted the institutional commitments made by the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement through the Disability Inclusion Strategic Framework and the ICRC Disability Vision 2030 which aim to create and support opportunities for persons with disabilities to achieve their full potential.  While COVID-19 created challenges and exacerbated existing socioeconomic inequalities and vulnerabilities, case studies across the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement highlighted how National Societies, volunteers and programmes adapted to the needs of persons with disabilities. Participants shared perspectives on disability inclusion on how to approach institutional commitments, programming priorities and mainstreaming disability inclusion across humanitarian and non-humanitarian contexts and the acknowledgement of disabilities within communities and contexts. Participants reiterated the sentiment “Nothing about us Without Us”’.

Key achievements/outcomes:

Effortless inclusion means alleviating the structural barriers to participation and creating pathways for inclusion, from decision making to representation as staff, volunteers and other aspects of the organization.

This requires a two-fold approach in programming as well as institutional reflection,

Focusing on Protection, Gender and Inclusion as a broad approach, enable a greater understanding of the vulnerabilities faced by persons with intersectional identities.

Inclusion of persons with disabilities requires mainstreamed and specialized interventions.