On December 3, the United Nations celebrates the International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD). The World Health Organization joins the UN in observing this day each year, a day all about raising awareness and promoting the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities at every level of society and development.
As the UN states:
Disability inclusion is an essential condition to upholding human rights, sustainable development, and peace and security.
In 2019, the UN launched the United Nations Disability Inclusion Strategy, providing the foundation for sustainable and transformative progress on disability inclusion.
In 2022, the WHO launched the Global Report on health equity for persons with disabilities, which provides approaches and actions countries can take to address health inequities experienced by people with disabilities.
Nurses in particular must be advocates for ensuring that their disabled patients receive the healthcare they need and deserve.
In addition to spreading awareness about this day and the importance of being advocates for disabled people, LNF would like to shine a light on the National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities:
an open membership, cross-disability, public education and advocacy organization that works to promote the full inclusion and acceptance of people with disabilities and chronic health conditions into nursing careers.
Too often, people with disabilities are left out of important discussions around diversity, equity, and inclusion. Disability advocates have made great strides that benefit everyone, such as passing landmark legislation like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
However, even three decades after the passing of the ADA in 1990, there is still much work to be done to protect the rights of people with disabilities.