Report: Pacific Sisters with Disabilities at the Intersection of Discrimination
Both people with disabilities and also women experience discrimination in countries around the world, including within the Pacific region. Women with disabilities experience a double dose of discrimination. A newly released report, entitled Pacific Sisters with Disabilities: at the Intersection of Discrimination (PDF format, 981 Kb), reviews the situation of women with disabilities in the Pacific region. It includes discussion on the challenges of discrimination against women with disabilities; laws among Pacific Island governments; and policies and programs within disabled people’s organizations (DPOs), women’s organizations, and mainstream international development partners. The report concludes with recommendations for improving the situation of women with disabilities in the Pacific region. This April 2009 report, by authors Daniel Stubbs and Sainimili Tawake, covers the situation of 22 Pacific countries and territories. It was published by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Pacific Center.
The research leading to this report found that a few helpful laws, policies, and systems of practice do exist in some countries. However, disabled women do still tend to fare more poorly compared to disabled men or compared to non-disabled women. Specifically, they are often less educated, experience more unemployment, face more violence and abuse, encounter more poverty, are more isolated, have less access to health care, and have lower social status. Women with disabilities also have less access to information about education, health care, their reproductive rights, recreation, politics, or even the weather.
Unfortunately, very limited documentation on the situation of women with disabilities exist in any region, including the Pacific. This report relies partly on extrapolation from what is known about women with disabilities in other regions. This information is supplemented, where possible, with local data, statistics, anecdotes, and other information specific to disabled women in the Pacific.
The full 90-page report can be downloaded for free, in PDF format (981 Kb) at: http://www.undppc.org.fj/_resources/article/files/Final%20PSWD%20BOOKLET.pdf.
I learned about this report via the Global Partnership on Disability and Development email discussion list.
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