UN agency to launch campaign targeting violence against children

The Social Development Policy Division (SDPD) of the Economic Commission for Africa is co-organizing the launch of a global campaign for the “Good Treatment of Girls, Boys and Adolescents with Disabilities in the World”.

The campaign seeks to address vulnerabilities and degrading treatment most of them face on a daily basis.

The launch, which takes place at the United Nations Conference Centre on the 29th of November at 9:00 am, is being co-organized with the Special Envoy to the UN Secretary General on Disability and Accessibility, Maria Soledad Cisternas Reyes, and the Embassy of the Republic of Chile in Ethiopia.

William Muhwava, Chief of the Population and Youth Section in the SDPD, says the campaign will encourage African countries to accelerate efforts to promote the rights of, and eliminate violence against, children and adolescents with disabilities.

“The awareness raising campaign will launch what we are calling the ‘10 principles for my protection, well-being and development as a girl, boy or adolescent with disabilities’, which aims to promote the good treatment of children and adolescents with disabilities around the world,” he said.

According to the “State of the World’s Children Report” (2013, UNICEF), children with disabilities are excessively vulnerable to violence, abandonment and mistreatment. They are between 3 and 4 times more prone to suffer physical, sexual or psychological violence than children without disability.

In this regard, the campaign, championed by the SG’s special envoy on disability, aims to raise awareness on eliminating degrading treatment or punishment, exploitation, violence and abuse of all girls, boys, and adolescents with disabilities.

It will contribute to the full implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) which calls upon States Parties to take all necessary measures to ensure the full enjoyment by children with disabilities of all human rights and fundamental freedoms on an equal basis with other children.

It grants freedom from torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, freedom from exploitation, violence and abuse, and protection of personal integrity, physical and mental respectively.

The Special Envoy to the UN Secretary General on Disability and Accessibility is working with all UN regional commissions to launch the global campaign.

The regional event will bring together high-level government representatives, including all diplomatic missions based in Ethiopia, regional organisations, UN agencies, civil society and persons with disabilities.