Building Back Better: 2020 International Day of Persons with Disabilities

30 November, 2020

The annual International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) will be observed on Thursday 3 December. Established by the United Nations (UN), the goal of IDPD is to promote the inclusion and equal participation of people with disabilities in all aspects of society. This year’s theme is ‘Building Back Better: toward a disability-inclusive, accessible and sustainable post COVID-19 world’.

Typically, the UN commemorates IDPD through a series of official events at their headquarters in New York and around the world. This year, due to social distancing guidelines, many events will take place virtually.

IDPD 2020 events begin on 30 November and will continue through to 4 December, aligning with the 13th session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is a human rights treaty which came into force in 2008. Since then, the Conference of States Parties (COSP) sessions have been held every year at the UN Headquarters. In these sessions, member states discuss key themes relating to implementation of the CRPD. This year’s main theme is ‘a decade of action and delivery for inclusive sustainable development: implementing the CRPD and the 2030 Agenda for all persons with disabilities.’

Meanwhile, the European Commission has planned virtual events on 1–2 December for the European Day of Persons with Disabilities 2020, including an online conference and Access City Award 2021 ceremony. The virtual conference will include discussions about the impact of the pandemic on people with disabilities, the European Disability Strategy 2010–2020 and the in‑progress Strategy on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2021–2030. The award ceremony will reward cities’ efforts towards accessibility and inclusion.

On 3 December, the World Bank is hosting a webinar called ‘International Day of Persons with Disabilities: Building a More Disability-inclusive, Accessible and Sustainable Post‑COVID-19 World’. It will feature experts, policy-makers and disability advocates speaking about systemic inequalities that affect people with disabilities, especially in the wake of the pandemic.

To view or join relevant conversations on social media, you can follow hashtags such as #IDPD2020, #EveryoneEqual, #EDPD2020 or #EUDisability.

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