Today Is International Day Of Persons With Disabilities

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December 3, 2012 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.  The theme for 2012 is Removing barriers to create an inclusive and accessible society for all. This is from the UN Enable background page:

Over one billion people, or approximately 15 per cent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability.

Persons with disabilities, “the world’s largest minority”, often face barriers to participation in all aspects of society. Barriers can take a variety of forms, including those relating to the physical environment or to information and communications technology (ICT), or those resulting from legislation or policy, or from societal attitudes or discrimination. The result is that persons with disabilities do not have equal access to society or services, including education, employment, health care, transportation, political participation or justice.

Evidence and experience shows that when barriers to their inclusion are removed and persons with disabilities are empowered to participate fully in societal life, their entire community benefits. Barriers faced by persons with disabilities are, therefore, a detriment to society as a whole, and accessibility is necessary to achieve progress and development for all.

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) recognizes that the existence of barriers constitutes a central component of disability. Under the Convention, disability is an evolving concept that “results from the interaction between persons with impairments and attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.”

Accessibility and inclusion of persons with disabilities are fundamental rights recognized by the CRPD and are not only objectives, but also pre-requisites for the enjoyment of other rights. The CRPD (Article 9, accessibility) seeks to enable persons with disabilities to live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life and development. It calls upon States Parties to take appropriate measures to ensure that persons with disabilities have access to all aspects of society, on an equal basis with others, as well as to identify and eliminate obstacles and barriers to accessibility.

In spite of this, in many parts of the world today, lack of awareness and understanding of accessibility as a cross-cutting development issue remains an obstacle to the achievement of progress and development through the Millennium Development Goals, as well as other internationally agreed outcomes for all.

The commemoration of International Day of Persons with Disabilities in 2012 provides an opportunity to address this exclusion by focusing on promoting accessibility and removing all types of barriers in society.

The United Nations’s site on disability is called United Nations Enable and has links to various issues such as Highlights, Latest Developments and Key Issues. From their About Page:

United Nations Enable is the official website of the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (SCRPD) in the Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) at the United Nations Secretariat. The website provides public information on topics related to disability and the work of the United Nations for persons with disabilities.


NHBPM – Why The Hell Not!

Why The Hell Not!  are  posts  I’m going to do from time to time to remind, not only those of us with chronic illnesses, but for all of us to do something for ourselves.  Something you may not have thought of doing or something you have wanted to do for a long time. Nothing is too silly or frivolous. The time to do something for yourself is now because…why the hell not!

Rediscover Your Local Library

Our community libraries are changing and evolving just like the rest of us. They are no longer just books in a building. Today’s libraries offer so much more. Music, e-books, audio books, events, workshops, computers and internet access. If you are disabled or are homebound, libraries will also assist you with books for the visually impaired or have books delivered to you home. My library also lets people borrow passes to the local museums, pedometers so you can see how many steps and how far you walk and meters to measure the electricity output in your home. Our libraries, like our communities, are changing to fit the needs of the people.

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This post was written as part of NHBPM – 30 health posts in 30 days:

Stumbleupon, Disabilities and Chronic Illness

I sometimes travel through to see what little gems it gives me. Recently, I picked the category Disabilities. Here’s a few of the websites that came up for me.

An Open Letter To Those Without Invisible Disability Or Chronic Illness from the web site, is a wonderful letter on how chronic illness impacts a person’s life and encourages the reader, through examples, on how they can understand some of the daily difficulties that we face.

American Harbor by Mouth painter Brom Wikstrom

I found the above painting on, the U.S. website for mouth and foot painting artists. (Association of Mouth and Foot Painting Artists worldwide is the international site.)  There are numerous artists, some of their work and a variety of items are for sale. The following quote is from their home page:

Formed in 1956, the MFPA is an international, for-profit association wholly owned and run by disabled artists to help them meet their financial needs. Members paint with brushes held in their mouths or feet as a result of a disability sustained at birth or through an accident or illness that prohibits them from using their hands.

Would you like to be in awe some more? has posted a list of artists with various disabilities and illnesses and their artwork. Here’s a sample of two of the artists.

Willow Bascom


Dennis Francesconi

Have you ever had someone tell you “It’s all in your head” or “It just stress”. An article about things not to say to someone with a chronic illness or disability is on This site started as a web-based publication and has branched out into monthly webinars and a print magazine. Their mission is to bring education and clarity to the business benefits of diversity through diversity management. They define diversity management as

the proactive management of race/culture, gender, orientation, disability and age to ensure equal outcome in relationships with employees, customers, investors and suppliers.

Those are a few of the sites that caught my eye. I hope you enjoy my finds and have a great day.