NEWS: Disabled People Lack Assistance After Myanmar Disaster
In humanitarian disasters, people with disabilities are often more at risk and disproportionately affected by crisis situations. Yet they are persistently forgotten and left behind by most of the mainstream agencies that are supposed to help. Unfortunately, this has happened once again during and after the recent cyclones in Myanmar. (Given how often this situation occurs, it would perhaps be more accurate to term this article “Non-News” rather than “News.”)
It is reported that very little of the relief dollars sent to Myanmar has filtered down to people with disabilities in the country. Yet, despite the fact that people with disabilities are both more likely to need assistance and less likely to actually receive it, they are often not even included in most mainstream reports meant to assess the situation in Myanmar.
Read more detail about the situation for people with disabilities in post-cyclone Myanmar in the article entitled Myanmar: Disabled People Await Post-Cyclone Aid at the humanitarian news and analysis page for the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
People interested in the fate of people with disabilities in humanitarian crisis situations may wish to browse other We Can Do blog posts on Disaster Planning and Mitigation (consult the pull down menu under “categories” in the right hand navigation bar). A few items of particular interest include:
- Refugees with Disabilities: Facts and Solutions, about two publications on the situation of displaced populations with disabilities and how to help them.
- The Bonn Declaration on Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Emergency Situations
- World Disasters Report 2007: Focus on Discrimination: this report discusses how discrimination can put vulnerable populations at higher risk for death and other devastating consequences during disaster situations, and discusses how to address the problem. Includes a chapter on people with disabilities.
- Paper on the Impact of the South Asian Earthquake on Disabled People
I found the link to the Myanmar story via a recent issue of the newsletter for Disabled People’s International.
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