09:00 – 17:00, Thailand Standard Time
Asia and the Pacific is home to more than 700 million persons with disabilities who face significant barriers to full and effective participation in society. To realize the regional vision of inclusive development that upholds the rights of all persons with disabilities, ESCAP member States proclaimed in 2012 the Asian and Pacific Decade of Persons with Disabilities, 2013-2022, and adopted the Incheon Strategy to “Make the Right Real” for Persons with Disabilities in Asia and the Pacific, the world’s first set of disability-specific development goals. The Beijing Declaration, including the Action Plan to Accelerate the Implementation of the Incheon Strategy was later adopted by member States in 2017 to provide guidance on further advancing disability-inclusive development.
The Incheon Strategy and the Beijing Declaration and Action Plan have inherent synergies with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and key policy instruments that are explicitly inclusive of persons with disabilities, namely the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, 2015-2030, both adopted in 2015. The Incheon Strategy and the Beijing Declaration and Action Plan constitute a unique set of policy and advocacy tools to support the advancement of disability rights and the realization of inclusive and sustainable societies, with no one left behind, in the Asia-Pacific region.
In 2022, Governments, peoples and other diverse stakeholders in the ESCAP region stand poised at the conclusion of the Decade. At this historical crossroads, there is a need for Governments, persons with disabilities and other stakeholders in the region to chart the way forward towards more disability-inclusive societies in Asia and the Pacific.
To inform the shaping of the new directions and strategies, ESCAP is leading a comprehensive final review of the implementation of the Decade through an analytical review of the implementation of the present Decade, and a series of consultations including an expert group meeting (22-23 June 2022), a stakeholder consultation (July 2022) and a civil society forum (tentatively, October 2022). These activities will culminate in a High-level Intergovernmental Meeting on the Final Review of the Asian and Pacific Decade of Persons with Disabilities (2013-2022), to be convened from 19 to 21 October 2022, to conclude the Decade and galvanize fresh commitment and renewed support for disability rights and disability-inclusive development in the region.
Against this background, ESCAP is organizing an expert group meeting aimed at generating recommendations that focus on the ESCAP secretariat’s strategic direction and doable action priorities, for the period 2023 through 2030. The recommendations will inform the preparation of the draft outcome document to be considered and adopted by the High-level Intergovernmental Meeting. A detailed concept note of the Expert Group Meeting will be disseminated along with invitation to the meeting.
The Expert Group Meeting will bring together experts in disability rights and disability-inclusion, including persons with diverse disabilities and their representative organizations, civil society entities, private sector entities, sister entities in the United Nations system and other international, regional and subregional development organizations in the Asia-Pacific region.
The meeting will be held virtually via Zoom in the form of four sessions over two days. The meeting will be conducted in English. Real-time captioning and International Sign interpretation will be available. The detailed programme is provided under the Programme tab.