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Leonard Cheshire launches new global initiative with DFID

Posted: 30th July 2018

Leonard Cheshire and the Department for International Development (DFID) have launched a new initiative aimed at broadening understanding about the lives of people with disabilities around the world at this week’s Global Disability Summit.

Inconsistent or poor-quality data has long hampered the progress of development efforts to improve the lives of people with disabilities.  The Leonard  Cheshire Disability Portal will tackle gaps in data and provide detailed information related to a range of specific disabilities.

The Leonard Cheshire Disability Portal is an important and potentially game changing contribution to international development.

For the first-time, disaggregated data from multiple and diverse sources – across 16 development indicators in 40 countries – will be pooled together in one resource. Data around key development themes including inclusive education, economic empowerment, technology/innovation and stigma/discrimination will be available.

Uniquely, it enables cross-country comparisons and comprehensive analysis and as new data is identified it can easily be added.  The portal is also 2030 centric and considers the International Disability Alliance’s list of  Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) indicators prioritised in terms of disaggregated data.

The portal will be easily accessible to government officials, experts and advocates and aims to ensure people with disabilities, including groups such as girls with disabilities, are fully considered and included in development programmes and action.

The development of the portal supports the ambition of the UK government to raise global attention and focus on a long-neglected area, mobilise new global and national commitments on disability and showcase good practice, innovation and evidence from across the world.

Neil Heslop, Leonard Cheshire’s CEO, said: “This is the first time that a sample of collated data on disability of this size, bringing together so many different sources of data, with so many indicators has been analysed and made publicly available. The development of the portal is something we’re immensely proud of and is indicative of a long term, productive relationship with DFID. We hope it will continue to build towards being the definitive source of disability data and provide a foundation for swift progress.”

Secretary of State for International Development, Penny Mordaunt, said: “There is a lack of shared understanding about the lives of people with disabilities around the world.  Globally, we are not collecting enough data about people with disabilities, and we are not sharing it widely with those who can use it. This makes it harder for all governments to design policies to benefit people with disabilities, and for citizens to hold them to account. That is why we are working in partnership with Leonard Cheshire to fulfil our shared ambition of making this data available for everyone to use.”

Judy Heumann, Leonard Cheshire’s Global Ambassador, added: “The presentation of quality data will enable governments as well as disability advocacy organizations to gain greater understanding of the living conditions of people with disabilities.  This substantive information will enable governments and DPOs (disabled people’s organisations) to work aggressively to develop and advance legislation aimed at improving outcomes in areas such as education, housing, employment, transportation etc. Ultimately, I hope that this data will enable governments to understand that when they are collecting data, disability data also needs to be collected as well.”


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