Disability inclusion in Nordic foreign aid

04 Jan 2019
What can the Nordic countries do to ensure that aid really includes disabled people. A new report provides some answers.

The report “Leaving No One Behind. A Nordic Movement for Change”, looks at how Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland can use the Global Disability Summit, which was held in London July 2018, to strengthen the implementation of the UN sustainable development goals. Today the countries are struggling to comply with the sustainable development goals and the underlying principle of Leave No One Behind (LNOB).


Download the report here

2018 has been a very exciting year with a lot of progress when it comes to disability in aid and development. After the UK announced in November 2017 that it would organize a Global Disability Summit, much has happened to include disabled people in development work. A number of states and larger and smaller organizations have done an important job of rethinking their disability efforts. Part of the results was presented at the Diability Summit where dozens of states, multilateral organizations, businesses and other organizations committed themselves to strengthening their efforts for people with disabilities.

Now that we have heard all of these new commitments, it is time to look ahead and consider how all of this will be followed up in practice.

The report contains a review of the focus on disabled people in the development policy for Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. We have also added ten recommendations for inclusive foreign aid, as well as an assessment of how the different Nordic countries score on each of the ten recommendations.

Ten recommendations

Here are our recommendations to the Nordic Ministries of Foreign Affairs and development agencies

1/ “The last should come first”: Progressive universalism must become a new principle

2/ Funding levels must be adequate

3/ The Nordics should be members of GLAD

4/ Disabled people’s own organisations must be strengthened

5/ Nordic experiences must be shared, including our experiences and practices on inclusive society development – and on how to leave no one behind

6/ More funds should be earmarked for research and mapping regarding Leave no one behind/tracking inclusion

7/ There must be more crosscutting cooperation on issues of disability in ministries, agencies and embassies

8/ Private sector investments (and especially those receiving ODA-finance), must include the LNOB-agenda

9/ Too strict cofounding rules should be revised and adapted to promote inclusion

10/ The Nordics should co-host a Disability Summit in 2022

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