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International Day of Persons with Disabilities

December 3, 2023

December 3: International Day of Persons with Disabilities – A United Nations observance day that aims to promote the rights and well-being of disabled individuals

  • According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 15% of the world’s population, or about 1 billion people, live with a disability.
  • Disability prevalence is higher in low- and middle-income countries, with about 80% of persons with disabilities residing in these regions.
  • Women with disabilities face multiple layers of discrimination and are more likely to experience higher rates of poverty, unemployment, and limited access to healthcare and education.
  • Children with disabilities are less likely to attend school compared to their peers without disabilities. Around 50% of children with disabilities in developing countries do not go to school.
  • The global employment rate for persons with disabilities is significantly lower than that of persons without disabilities. It is estimated that less than 50% of persons with disabilities of working age are employed.
  • Access to healthcare services remains a challenge for many persons with disabilities, especially in resource-constrained settings. They often face barriers to obtaining necessary medical care and rehabilitation services.
  • Persons with disabilities are more vulnerable to poverty and social exclusion. They are often marginalized and face higher rates of poverty, limited access to resources, and restricted opportunities for social participation.
  • According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), persons with disabilities are more likely to work in vulnerable employment conditions, such as low-wage jobs, informal employment, or jobs without appropriate social protection.
  • Accessible infrastructure and transportation remain major barriers for persons with disabilities in many parts of the world. Many public spaces, buildings, and modes of transportation are not designed to accommodate their needs.
  • Discrimination and stigma against persons with disabilities persist globally, hindering their full participation in society. Attitudinal barriers, negative stereotypes, and lack of awareness contribute to their exclusion and marginalization.

These statistics highlight the challenges faced by persons with disabilities on a global scale, underscoring the need for continued efforts to promote inclusion, accessibility, and equal opportunities for all individuals, regardless of their abilities.


The United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) is observed annually on December 3rd. This day aims to promote the rights, well-being, and inclusion of persons with disabilities worldwide.

Here are 24 important facts about the International Day of Persons with Disabilities:

  1. The IDPD was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1992 through resolution 47/3, with the goal of increasing awareness and understanding of disability issues.
  2. The day serves as a platform to advocate for the full participation and equal opportunities of persons with disabilities in all aspects of society.
  3. The theme for each year’s IDPD is determined by the United Nations, highlighting specific disability-related issues and promoting focused discussions and actions.
  4. The IDPD recognizes that persons with disabilities make significant contributions to society and that their rights should be upheld and protected.
  5. The day promotes the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), an international human rights treaty specifically addressing the rights of individuals with disabilities.
  6. The CRPD was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2006 and came into force in 2008. It outlines the rights and freedoms that persons with disabilities should enjoy on an equal basis with others.
  7. The IDPD aims to raise awareness about the barriers faced by persons with disabilities in areas such as education, employment, accessibility, healthcare, and social inclusion.
  8. It seeks to promote the removal of these barriers and the creation of inclusive environments that respect the dignity and rights of persons with disabilities.
  9. The IDPD provides an opportunity to celebrate the achievements and contributions of persons with disabilities, highlighting their resilience, talents, and potential.
  10. The United Nations Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD Secretariat) supports the observance of the IDPD and provides guidance and resources to member states and stakeholders.
  11. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) plays a key role in coordinating and promoting activities related to the IDPD.
  12. The International Disability Alliance (IDA), a network of global disability organizations, actively contributes to the IDPD by coordinating events and advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities.
  13. The IDPD is observed by governments, organizations, and communities worldwide through various activities, including seminars, workshops, cultural events, awareness campaigns, and policy discussions.
  14. It provides an opportunity for governments to showcase their efforts in implementing disability-inclusive policies and programs.
  15. The IDPD emphasizes the importance of mainstreaming disability in development agendas and ensuring that persons with disabilities are included in all aspects of society.
  16. The United Nations encourages member states to actively involve persons with disabilities in the planning and organization of IDPD events to ensure meaningful participation.
  17. The IDPD underscores the need for accessible communication formats and technologies to ensure that information and services are available to persons with disabilities on an equal basis.
  18. It highlights the importance of accessible transportation, buildings, and public spaces to enable persons with disabilities to fully participate in society.
  19. The IDPD promotes the rights of children with disabilities, including their access to education, healthcare, and social services.
  20. It emphasizes the empowerment of women and girls with disabilities and the need to address the intersecting forms of discrimination they face.
  21. The IDPD calls for the removal of attitudinal barriers and the promotion of positive attitudes towards persons with disabilities to combat stigma, stereotypes, and discrimination.
  22. It encourages employers to create inclusive work environments that provide equal opportunities and reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities.
  23. The IDPD fosters partnerships and collaboration between governments, organizations, and persons with disabilities to drive collective action towards a more inclusive and accessible society.
  24. The observance of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities helps to keep disability rights on the global agenda and strengthens the commitment to achieving the full inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities in all aspects of life.

The International Day of Persons with Disabilities serves as a catalyst for ongoing efforts to advance the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities, promoting a world that is accessible, inclusive, and equitable for all.



Date: December 3, 2023
Cost: Free
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