BY- Indian Forum for Rehabilitation and Assistive Technology

The second Global Disability Summit ( is taking place virtually from 15 – 17 February 2022, hosted by the Governments of Norway and Ghana and by the International Disability Alliance (IDA). In reviewing the agenda, it is clear that the global disability discourse does not include two very crucial Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in the lives of persons with disabilities – SDG1 “End Poverty” and  SDG2 “Zero Hunger.“

Given this grave omission, we are requesting you assist in influencing the proceedings and outcomes of this Summit by publishing and circulating this letter widely to get greater commitments from Governments to end hunger and poverty for persons with disabilities  

The recognition of “poverty” as the main barrier for persons with disabilities has a long history.The 2011 World Report on Disability estimated that 15% of the world’s population (estimated 1 billion) has some form of disability and 80% of them live in middle and low income countries (MLIC). At least 20% of families living in poverty include a person with disability. 

Many of the gains made in reducing poverty and increasing equality and literacy over the last few decades have been lost due to the COVID 19 pandemic. Obviously, persons with disabilities are proportionately high among populations affected adversely by the pandemic. 

Despite this, the global discourse on disability does not demonstrate that it recognises poverty and hunger as major barriers for persons with disabilities. Examples of this lack of recognition appear in the UN’s Disability Inclusive Strategy; in the disability section of UNDESA’s agenda (United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs); and in the first three SDGs. Unless this grave omission is rectified squarely, these concerns will remain unaddressed by the global community and individual countries, leaving millions of persons with disabilities with no access to food security and other social protection measures.

To set this wrong right, the Disability and Development Consortium India (DDC) organised a Webinar on 9 February 2022 on “Poverty, Hunger and Disability: The Missing Link”with a recommendation for intersectional collaboration ( ) with eminent presenters Aruna Roy, Jean Dreze, Franziska Mager, Amitabh Behar, Praveen Kumar G. and Ketan Kothari.

We appreciate your cooperation in making poverty and its dire effects on persons with disabilities and their families visible at the GDS and that this attention leads to corrective action.