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Guidelines

INCLUSION OF
PERSONS WITH
DISABILITIES IN
HUMANITARIAN
ACTION

IASC Task Team on inclusion of Persons with


Disabilities in Humanitarian Action
______________
July 2019
Endorsed by IASC Principals
Contents

Contents���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������v
Acronyms��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� vii
Acknowledgements������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ viii
Foreword��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������x
Preface������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� xiii
1. Introduction������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 1
2. What you need to know�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 5
3. What to do: key approaches to programming����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������19
4. Data and information management������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������23
5. Partnerships and empowerment of organizations of persons with disabilities��������������������33
6. Cross-cutting considerations������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������37
7. Accountability to affected people and protection from sexual exploitation and abuse�����43
8. Humanitarian response options�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������47
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities�����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������55
10. What sectors need to do����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������69
11. Camp coordination and camp management������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������73
12. Education����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������83
13. Food security and nutrition����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������93

Copyright © Inter-Agency Standing 14. Livelihoods��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 103


Committee (IASC) 2019. 15. Health�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 111
All rights reserved. This document is issued 16. Protection������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 141
for general distribution.
17. Shelter and settlements ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 167
Reproductions and translations are
18. Water, sanitation and hygiene�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 177
authorized, except for commercial purposes,
provided the source is acknowledged. 19. Annexes��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 189

v
Acronyms

5W Who does What, Where, When, for Whom IHRL International human rights law
AAP Accountability to affected populations IMAS International Mine Action Standards
AOR Area of responsibility INEE Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies
CA Camp administration INGO International non-governmental organization
CAAP Commitments on Accountability to Affected IOM International Organization for Migration
Populations mhGAP Mental Health Gap Action Programme
CCCM Camp coordination and camp management MHPSS Mental health and psychosocial support
CHS Core humanitarian standards MICS Multiple indicator cluster survey
CMT Camp Management Toolkit NCD Non-communicable diseases
CRC Convention on the Rights of the Child NFI Non-food items
CRPD Convention on the Rights of Persons with NGO Non-governmental organization
Disabilities
OCHA Office of the Coordinator for Humanitarian Affairs
DHS Demographic and health survey
OECD- Organization for Economic Cooperation and
DFID Department for International Development DAC Development - Development Assistance Committee
ERW Explosive remnants of war OFDA Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance
FAO Food and Agriculture Organization OHCHR Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
GBV Gender-based violence OPD Organization of persons with disabilities
HC Humanitarian Coordinator PSEA Protection against sexual exploitation and abuse
HCT Humanitarian Country Team RC Resident Coordinator
HLP House, land and property SDGs Sustainable Development Goals
HIS Humanitarian Inclusion Standards SGBV Sexual and gender-based violence
HNO Humanitarian needs overview SRH/ Sexual health and reproductive health
HPC Humanitarian programme cycle SHRH
HRP Humanitarian response plan UNHCR United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
IASC Inter-Agency Standing Committee WASH Water, sanitation and hygiene
IFRC International Federation of the Red Cross and Red WHO World Health Organization
Crescent Societies WRC Women’s Refugee Commission
IHL International humanitarian law

vii
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Acknowledgements
The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Task Team on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Human- We are grateful to Christine Dinsmore, Robert Archer and Adam Woolf for editorial support, Slimane Sorour
itarian Action developed these Guidelines through a consultative, participatory and inclusive process. They for design and Prashant Verma for accessibility.
reflect the input of more than 600 stakeholders across the disability, humanitarian and development sectors. 
The IASC Secretariat provided invaluable support and guidance: we thank particularly Isabelle de Muyser-
The development process was overseen by the IASC Task Team co-chairs: Georgia Dominik (International Boucher, Nuhad Al-Alfi, Tanja Schuemer-Cross and Mervat Shelbaya. Additionally, the Task Team appreciated
Disability Alliance), Gopal Mitra (UNICEF) and Ricardo Pla Cordero and Ulrike Last (Humanity & Inclusion). the cooperation and support of the co-chairs of the IASC Results Group on Accountability and Inclusion,
Valerie Scherrer was the lead consultant for development of the Guidelines with significant contribution Bernadette Castel-Hollingsworth (UNHCR) and Meritxell Relaño (UNICEF).
from Asma Maladwala (UNICEF).
The IASC Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action could not have been
The co-chairs wish to thank all the members of the IASC Task Team for their active engagement and support prepared or completed without the financial assistance granted by the Australian Department of Foreign
since 2016. The Task Team is composed of representatives from UN agencies, humanitarian and develop- Affairs and Trade, the Australian Permanent Mission's International Development Fund, the European Civil
ment organizations, governments and organizations of persons with disabilities. The co-chairs also thank Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the German
members of the IASC Reference Groups on Gender and Humanitarian Action and on Mental Health and Federal Foreign Office and the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Psychosocial Support (MHPSS), the Cash and Learning Partnership and the Global Protection Cluster for
their collaboration and active involvement. Finally, we acknowledge the Inter-Agency Standing Committee itself. Its decision to establish a Task Team
with a tri-partite co-chairing arrangement has ensured that persons with disabilities and their representative
The Task Team is grateful to the members of the core group for their consistent support and valuable inputs, organizations gave leadership and fully participated in this initiative from the outset.  
namely Facundo Chavez-Penillas (OHCHR), Isabelle De Muyser-Boucher (OCHA), Georgia Dominik (Interna-
tional Disability Alliance), Kirstin Lange (UNHCR), Ulrike Last (Humanity & Inclusion), Boram Lee (Women’s
Refugee Commission), Asma Maladwala (UNICEF), Anita Marini (MHPSS Reference Group) Gopal Mitra
(UNICEF), Mina Mojtahedi (International Federation of the Red Cross/International Committee of the Red
Cross) and Ricardo Pla Cordero (International Rescue Committee).

We also thank the following individuals who made important contributions: Sien Andries, Astrid Arne,
Orsolya Bartha, Elena Bertozzi, Mariangela Bizzari, Estelle Bloom, Sabrina Ebert, Greta Gamberini, Priscille
Geiser, Vidar Glette, Jessica Justus, Janet Lord, Meghna Manaktala, Melissa Marshall, Juliette Myers, Tom
Palmer, Stephen Perry, Emma Pearce, Marcie Roth, Roberto Saltori, Delphine Sokchearta, Haakon Spriewald
and Janet Aderemi Toyin.

The Guidelines could not have been prepared without the extensive participatory consultations that organi-
zations of persons with disabilities convened in association with the Task Team. We are particularly grateful
to the African Disability Forum; the Arab Organization of Persons with Disabilities; Inclusion International; the
Latin American Network of Non-Governmental Organizations of Persons with Disabilities and their Families
(RIADIS); and the Pacific Disability Forum. We also thank the Centre for Disability in Development (Bangla-
desh), the European Disability Forum, Human Rights Watch and the Women’s Refugee Commission for their
contributions to regional and thematic consultations. Dragana Jocic and Stacy Cokson of the IDA Logistics
Team worked tirelessly to ensure the success of many of the consultations and workshops.

More widely, we thank the very many people who participated in the online survey and initial desk review,
reviewed drafts, supported the preparations of the sector-specific chapters, and took part in the validation
workshop, core-group review processes, and the many global, regional and thematic consultations and
multi-stakeholder workshops that the Guidelines draw upon.  

viii ix
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Foreword

In 2011, as armed militias were burning down homes in Tawergha in Libya, a woman named Hawa was Everyone benefits, when we remove biases and provide opportunities for people with disabilities. The Inter-
unable to run because of a disability. Fortunately, she had two sisters who could carry her to safety. In the national Labour Organization found that excluding people with disabilities from the world of work can rob
eight years since living in displacement, Hawa says she has only seen a doctor once. countries of as much as 7 per cent of their Gross Domestic Product.

I have met several people like Hawa with disabilities, who are among those displaced either by raging Not only are we doing the right thing, our response also becomes more effective as we give voice to the
conflicts or extreme weather events. Adapting to the new and the unfamiliar is challenging for anyone. But voiceless and leave no one behind.
when speaking to people with disabilities in humanitarian settings from Bangladesh to Haiti, it brings home
their added difficulties if our responses fall short.

Our job is to ensure that people like Hawa are counted like any other in a humanitarian response during a
crisis. It is her fundamental right – and the right of hundreds of thousands more – to access the same protec-
tion and care we provide to others.
Mark Lowcock
And we must ensure that special focus is on the most marginalized amongst them, such as children and Under-Secretary General for
older people, who often run the risk of being the most invisible. Humanitarian Affairs
and Emergency Relief Coordinator
To make this a reality the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with
Disabilities in Humanitarian Action is a welcomed and timely step in the right direction. I am grateful to the
members of the Task Team on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action and its co-chairs
UNICEF, Humanity and Inclusion (also known as Handicap International) and the International Disability
Alliance, for their work in preparing these guidelines on behalf of the IASC. It comes amid a growing global
awareness of the rights of persons with disabilities.

These crucial system-wide Guidelines, which are a first, will ensure the inclusion of persons with disabilities
in all sectors and in all phases of humanitarian action. They are a result of an inclusive consultative process,
which involved more than 600 stakeholders from the humanitarian and disability sectors, including many
organizations of persons with disabilities from around the world. In the endeavour to save lives and reduce
human suffering in humanitarian crises, United Nations’ agencies will implement these guidelines in accor-
dance with their respective mandates and the decisions of their governing bodies.

The idea to develop the Guidelines originated with the Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in
Humanitarian Action launched at the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul. The Charter has been
endorsed in the meantime by more than 220 stakeholders, including 30 Member States and 14 UN agencies.

The Guidelines are a key contribution of the humanitarian sector to the United Nations Disability Inclusion
Strategy (UNDIS) that the United Nations Secretary General launched in June 2019.

x xi
Preface

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2006) introduced a new paradigm for persons
with disabilities. It shifted policy and policy implementation from a charitable and medical approach to one
based on rights.

The international system has also become more inclusive following adoption of the 2030 Agenda for
Sustainable Development (2015), which affirms that no one should be left behind and that those who are
furthest behind should be supported first. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (2015) and
the One Humanity Shared Responsibility: Report of the Secretary-General for the World Humanitarian Summit
(2016) affirm the same principles, as do many commitments that derive from the World Humanitarian Summit,
including the Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action.

The United Nations (UN) is currently revising its system-wide policies to become more inclusive of persons
with disabilities. In March 2019 it adopted the UN Disability Inclusion Strategy, under which UN entities,
country teams and humanitarian country teams will measure and track their performance with respect to
disability inclusion.

The World Humanitarian Summit in 2016 made a commitment to develop globally endorsed system-wide
guidelines on how to include persons with disabilities in humanitarian action (the Charter on Inclusion of
Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action, mentioned above). These guidelines have been designed
to provide practical information for humanitarian actors and other relevant stakeholders. They place persons
with disabilities, and their human rights, at the centre of humanitarian action.

Disclaimer

These guidelines provide guiding principles for better inclusion of persons with disabilities in humani-
tarian action. In the next step towards operationalizing them, the IASC will develop practical implemen-
tation tools and resources. IASC cluster lead agencies are encouraged to steward the development of
practical and prioritized implementation tools and resources in the sectors they lead.

The tools and resources listed as examples throughout these guidelines may not have been updated
since the entry into force of the CRPD in 2008, and some do not properly reflect CRPD standards. Rele-
vant standards address free and informed consent, (de)institutionalization, deprivation of liberty, and
(non) coercive treatment, among others. Failure to respect these standards usually leads to human
rights violations that disproportionately affect persons with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities.
The resources listed have nevertheless been included because they are valuable tools that can promote
the inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action.

xii xiii
1 Introduction

1. Introduction

What are the guidelines about?

The guidelines set out essential actions that humani- Humanitarian inclusion standards for older people
tarian actors must take in order to effectively identify and people with disabilities.
and respond to the needs and rights of persons with
disabilities who are most at risk of being left behind These are the first humanitarian guidelines to be
in humanitarian settings. developed with and by persons with disabilities and
their representative organizations in association with
The recommended actions in each chapter place traditional humanitarian stakeholders. Based on the
persons with disabilities at the centre of human- outcomes of a comprehensive global and regional
itarian action, both as actors and as members of multi-stakeholder consultation process, they are
affected populations. They are specific to persons designed to promote the implementation of quality
with disabilities and to the context of humanitar- humanitarian programmes in all contexts and across
ian action and build on existing and more general all regions, and to establish and increase both the
standards and guidelines, including the Core inclusion of persons with disabilities and their mean-
Humanitarian Standard, Sphere Handbook and ingful participation in all decisions that concern them.

Diagram 1 | The four objectives of the guidelines

1 2 3 4
GUIDANCE CAPACITY ACCOUNTABILITY PARTICIPATION

To provide practical To increase capacity To describe the roles To increase and improve
guidance on including among humanitarian and responsibilities the participation of
persons with disabilities stakeholders to develop of humanitarian persons with disabilities
in humanitarian and implement quality stakeholders to include and organizations of
programming and programmes that are persons with disabilities persons with disabilities
coordination. inclusive of persons with in humanitarian action (OPDs) in preparedness,
disabilities. (see Who are the response and recovery.
guidelines for?).

1
1. Introduction Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Why are the guidelines important? Who are the guidelines for? • The degree to which expertise on disability is
available in the affected country;
Persons with disabilities are estimated to represent ways that attitudinal, physical and communication The guidelines are designed primarily for use by
15 per cent of the world’s population.1 In humanitarian barriers impede their participation and inclusion in national, regional and international humanitarian • The quality of political and legal frameworks
contexts, they may form a much higher percentage. humanitarian action, and in their identity, including actors who are involved in policymaking, coordina- on disability in the affected country;
They are among the most marginalized people in their age, gender, ethnicity, location and race. Due to tion, programming and funding. Notably:
crisis-affected communities2 and are disproportion- the intersectionality of these factors, persons with • The degree to which services for persons
ately affected by conflict and emergency situations. disabilities face greater marginalization and discrim- • Governments; with disabilities are available, accessible and
In disasters, their mortality rate is two to four times ination. During humanitarian crises, for example, chil- effective;
higher than that of persons without disabilities.3 dren with disabilities are at higher risk of abuse and • Humanitarian leadership (Emergency, Refu-
neglect, and women with disabilities are at higher gee and Resident Coordinators, humanitarian • The presence of operational OPDs and
Persons with disabilities are not a homogeneous risk of sexual violence.4 country teams); whether they are experienced and adequately
group. They are diverse in their experience, in the resourced;
• Cluster/sector leads;
Diagram 2 | Global population of persons with disabilities 5 • The availability and quality of data on persons
• Programmers (in humanitarian and develop- with disabilities and the degree to which avail-

15%
ment organizations); able data accurately reflect the diversity of the
population of persons with disabilities in the
• Donors; affected country.
An estimated 15% of the world’s population have a disability.
• Local, national, regional and international To illustrate, OPDs in an affected area may be
organizations of persons with disabilities under-resourced or inexperienced or may not
(OPDs).6 represent the population of persons with disabil-
ities. Where this is the case, it may be necessary
The guidelines will also be useful to field prac- to build their capacity on humanitarian action or
titioners and other humanitarian actors because create and empower community peer-support
they describe processes for including persons with groups of persons with disabilities. The aim should
disabilities and make recommendations to sectors. be to enable OPDs to participate in consultations

46%
on assistance and protection during all phases of

1 in 5
a humanitarian response (including preparedness,
Where can these guidelines be used?
1 in 10
the response itself, and recovery).
46% of persons aged 60 years
One in five women is and over have a disability. Humanitarian settings vary widely due to the nature In all circumstances, humanitarian actors, together
likely to experience of a crisis (natural hazard, conflict, displacement, with OPDs, must identify and address factors that
One in ten children is
disability during her life. a child with a disability. political crisis, etc.), its location (urban, rural, remote make it difficult for persons with disabilities to
islands), and whether it is a rapid, slow onset or access assistance and protection (see the section
protracted crisis. The recommendations in these barriers), as well as factors that promote their
guidelines are relevant to all settings but need to be inclusion and protection. This is necessary both
adapted and localized to take account of context. to ensure that every member of an affected popu-
lation receives the services to which he or she is
Contextual factors that should be considered when entitled and to strengthen the accountability of the
implementing the guidelines include: intervention.

• The degree to which disability is recognized


and understood in the affected country;
1 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).
2 
Report of the United Nations Secretary-General for the World Humanitarian Summit, One Humanity, Shared Responsibility.
3 
Katsunori Fujii, ‘The Great East Japan Earthquake and Disabled Persons’, in Disability Information Resources, Japan.
4 
UNICEF, Including children with disabilities in humanitarian action – General Guidance (2017). The guidelines seek to meet the needs of mainstream humanitarian stakeholders, including OPDs as humanitarian stakeholders and development
6 

5 
 ources: WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011); UN DESA, Ageing and Disability; UNICEF, Children and Young People
S actors involved in humanitarian action, rather than organizations specializing in disability. See the minutes of a multi-stakeholder IASC workshop
with Disabilities (2013). held in October 2017.

2 3
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

2 What you need


to know

2. What you need to know

Legal and policy framework emergencies have civil, political, economic, social
and cultural rights, which they may claim from rele-
The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC)7 is vant duty bearers.
the primary mechanism for inter-agency coordina-
tion of humanitarian assistance at the international The Convention on the Rights of Persons with
level. The IASC has emphasized the relevance of Disabilities (CRPD) is an international human rights
international law in humanitarian crises, in particular treaty that is binding on States that ratify it (States
international humanitarian law (IHL), international Parties).10 The CRPD affirms that States Parties
human rights law (IHRL), and international refugee must protect and promote the rights of persons with
law.8 These bodies of law provide a legal framework disabilities in their laws, policies and practices; and
that grounds humanitarian action in internationally must also comply with the treaty’s standards when
agreed principles and standards and affirms the they engage in international cooperation.
rights of all individuals affected by crises. Interna-
tional human rights law, which is applicable at all Article 11 of the CRPD specifically requires States
times, also provides a bridge between humanitarian Parties, in accordance with their obligations under
and development action. It can be used to address international law, to take all necessary measures to
the causes and consequences of crises, define and ensure the protection and safety of persons with
meet humanitarian needs, and establish the condi- disabilities in situations of risk, including armed
tions that must be met before individuals can enjoy conflicts, humanitarian emergencies and natural
internationally agreed rights. hazards.11

State actors are the primary duty bearers under inter- Other CRPD articles are relevant to humanitarian
national human rights law.9 They have the first and action and development, and support inclusion of
main responsibility to protect, respect and fulfil the persons with disabilities. The CRPD should be incor-
rights of persons on their territory or under their juris- porated in all humanitarian interventions. To do so,
diction. Persons affected by crises and humanitarian humanitarian actors should examine and evalu-

7 
 he IASC was established in 1992 in response to UN General Assembly Resolution 46/182. Its membership includes both UN and non-UN humanitar-
T
ian organizations. For more information, see IASC website.
8 
See IASC, IASC Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016); and IASC, the IASC Principals’ statement: The Centrality of Protection in Humani-
tarian Action (2013). Annex I of the IASC Policy on Protection provides useful information on relevant international law.
9 
Under IHL, non-State armed groups (NSAGs) who are involved in an armed conflict are bound to respect IHL. In addition, de facto authorities or
NSAGs that exercise government-like functions or control territory are increasingly expected to respect international human rights law when their
conduct affects the human rights of individuals under their control.
10 
179 States and the European Union are parties to the CRPD as of June 2019.
11 
See Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Optional Protocol.

5
2. What you need to know Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

ate current practices, processes and outcomes to are at risk of being left in areas prone to attack, for accessibility,15 and the application of universal The CRPD includes several principles that are appli-
ensure that the human rights of persons with disabil- instance, IHL specifically prioritizes their evacuation design standards,16 and recognizes that persons cable to humanitarian action.19 They include: respect
ities are protected and promoted as required by inter- from such areas. Both IHL and IHRL affirm the obli- with disabilities and their organizations have a criti- for inherent dignity; participation and inclusion;
national law. gations to protect and ensure the safety of persons cal role to play at all stages of disaster risk reduction non-discrimination and equality of opportunity; and
with disabilities during armed conflicts; this obliga- planning.17 equality between men and women. More specific
tion is set out in Article 11 of the CRPD. but equally important principles include: accessi-
International human rights law (IHRL) bility; respect for difference; acceptance of persons
Disarmament treaties include specific protections World Humanitarian Summit (2016) and Agenda for with disabilities as part of human diversity; respect
IHRL affirms that all individuals have civil, political, for survivors of weapons and remnants of war after Humanity commitments for the evolving capacities of children with disabili-
economic, social and cultural rights and defines conflicts end. ties; individual autonomy including freedom to make
these rights. In applying these universal rights to The situation of persons with disabilities was one’s own choices; and independence of persons.
persons with disabilities, the CRPD significantly discussed during the World Humanitarian Summit
shifted the way in which persons with disabilities Other instruments and policy frameworks and a number of organizations undertook to include These principles are closely linked to each right
are perceived. Disability is understood to arise persons with disabilities in humanitarian action.18 affirmed by the Convention. If implemented along-
when individuals with impairments interact with Sustainable Development Goals Member States, UN organizations, non-governmen- side humanitarian principles and standards, includ-
the barriers they face. This has important impli- tal organizations (NGOs) and others recognized that ing the Humanitarian Charter and the Code of
cations for understanding not only what disability The 2030 Agenda emphasizes that all States have humanitarian policies, procedures and programmes Conduct, they guarantee that persons with disabil-
is but also how it should be addressed, including a responsibility to respect, protect and promote that seek to include persons with disabilities must ities will be included in all phases of humanitarian
in the context of humanitarian action. In order to human rights without discrimination of any kind, be strengthened and systematized. preparedness and response.
ensure that people with disabilities can fully exer- including in relation to persons with disabilities.
cise their rights, it becomes necessary to identify Its 17 Goals provide an internationally agreed frame- The Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities Humanitarian action is also informed by the prin-
and remove social, legal, political and environmental work for national and global development action in in Humanitarian Action, launched during the Summit, ciples of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and
barriers that prevent them from enjoying their rights, the period to 2030. The Agenda includes a global is grounded in both IHL and IHRL. It established five independence set out in General Assembly reso-
including attitudes and behaviours that stigmatize commitment ‘to leave no one behind’. actionable commitments: non-discrimination; partic- lutions.20 These principles are central to the work of
and marginalize persons with disabilities. It is also ipation; inclusive policies; inclusive responses and humanitarian organizations, many of which make
necessary to include persons with disabilities in Goal 96 is especially relevant to the inclusion of services; and cooperation and coordination. additional commitments to protect human rights,
decision-making, in line with their motto, ‘Nothing persons with disabilities in humanitarian action. respect the inherent dignity of affected popula-
about us without us’. It affirms the need to promote peaceful and inclu- In addition to the above, both the Global Compact on tions, and strengthen accountability, by endorsing
sive societies for sustainable development, provide Refugees and the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly a code of conduct or endorsing and implementing
access to justice for all, and build effective, account- and Regular Migration include specific provisions on the nine commitments of the Core Humanitarian
International humanitarian law (IHL) able and inclusive institutions at all levels. Goal 9 persons with disabilities that advocate their inclu- Standard. The humanitarian principles underline
calls on societies to build sound infrastructures, sion in responses to movements of refugees and that it is essential to maintain and improve the
In armed conflict, IHL provides general protection particularly in areas affected by disasters. Goals 11 migrants. accountability, quality and performance of human-
to civilians and persons hors de combat, including and 13 serve to remind that no issues, including itarian action. They are critical to efforts to ensure
persons with disabilities, ‘without adverse distinc- disaster prevention and relief, can be understood or the inclusion of persons with disabilities in human-
tion’ (discrimination).12 The prohibition of adverse addressed effectively in isolation. Guiding principles of the IASC guidelines itarian settings.
distinction permits humanitarian actors to priori-
tize persons with disabilities and may even require The IASC Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with
them to take specific measures to do so. Humanitar- Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction Disabilities in Humanitarian Action are under- Who are persons with disabilities?
ian relief efforts must make sure, for example, that 2015-203013 pinned by principles that guarantee that the rights of
food, water, health care, rehabilitation and shelter persons with disabilities will be respected, protected For the purpose of these guidelines, persons with
are available and accessible to persons with disabil- The Sendai Framework aims to reduce disaster and promoted throughout humanitarian prepared- disabilities include persons who have long-term
ities. Provisions of IHL may also be used to prevent risks and loss of lives and assets. It promotes an ness, response and recovery.
or minimize harm to persons with disabilities during ‘all of society’ approach that includes persons with
hostilities. Recognizing that persons with disabilities disabilities. The framework promotes inclusion,14
15 
Ibid, para. 19(d).
16 
Ibid, para. 30(c).
17 
Ibid, para. 36(a)(iii).
12 
See ICRC, Discrimination (or adverse distinction). 18 
See Agenda for Humanity, Explore Commitments and Reports.
13 
Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030, adopted at the Third UN World Conference in Sendai, Japan, 18 March 2015. 19 
CRPD, Article 3.
14 
Ibid, para. 7. On humanity, neutrality and impartiality, see General Assembly resolution 46/182 (1991). On independence, see General Assembly resolution 58/114 (2004).
20 

6 7
2. What you need to know Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

sensory, physical, psychosocial, intellectual or other tion or specialized design”.23 The principles restrict their opportunities to participate.27 flexibly to reasonable demands (denial of reason-
impairments that, in interaction with various barriers, of universal design facilitate accessibility, Lack of services or problems with service able accommodation).33
prevent them from participating in, or having access including for persons with disabilities.24 delivery are also environmental barriers.28, 29
to, humanitarian programmes, services or protection.21 Reasonable accommodation requires indi-
Assistive technology, devices and mobility aids Institutional barriers include laws, policies, viduals and institutions to modify their
A human rights-based approach to disability places are external products (devices, equipment, instru- strategies or institutionalized practices that procedures or services (accommodate),
persons with disabilities at the centre and reduces ments, software), specially produced or generally discriminate against persons with disabil- where this is necessary and appropriate,
barriers and risks that they face. It requires human- available, that maintain or improve an individual’s ities or prevent them from participating in either to avoid imposing a disproportionate
itarian actors to recognize the capacity of persons functioning and independence, participation, or over- society.30 or undue burden on persons with disabilities
with disabilities to contribute to the humanitarian all well-being.25 They can also help prevent second- or to enable them to exercise their human
response. ary impairments and health conditions. Examples of Barriers may be classified as a threat if they are rights and fundamental freedoms on an
assistive devices and technologies include wheel- put in place intentionally. They are described as equal basis with others.34
Persons with disabilities are a diverse group. They chairs, prostheses, hearing aids, visual aids, and a vulnerability if their occurrence is inadvertent. In
have different impairments and diverse identities specialized computer software and hardware that both cases, barriers lead to exclusion, making it likely  ultiple and intersecting forms of discrim-
M
(as women, indigenous persons, children, etc.). Due improve mobility, hearing, vision, or the capacity to that persons with disabilities will face more or worse ination occur when a person experiences
to the intersectionality of these factors, persons with communicate. threats and vulnerabilities than others affected by discrimination on two or more grounds at
disabilities may face multiple forms of discrimination. a crisis. once. In such circumstances, the effects
To avoid leaving persons with disabilities behind, an Barriers are factors in a person’s environment that of discrimination are compounded or
understanding of these differences must inform the hamper participation and create disability. For Disability inclusion is achieved when persons with aggravated. For example, a woman with
approach adopted in humanitarian action from the persons with disabilities, they limit access to and disabilities meaningfully participate in all their a disability may simultaneously experi-
outset. inclusion in society. Barriers may be attitudinal, envi- diversity, when their rights are promoted, and when ence discrimination because of her sex
ronmental or institutional. disability-related concerns are addressed in compli- and because of her disability. ‘Intersec-
ance with the CRPD.31 It is related to the concept tional discrimination’ occurs when multi-
Key concepts and definitions Attitudinal barriers are negative attitudes of ‘social inclusion’, which has been defined as ple forms of discrimination interact
that may be rooted in cultural or religious “the process by which efforts are made to ensure together in a way that exposes the indi-
Accessibility is one of the eight principles that beliefs, hatred, unequal distribution of power, equal opportunities – that everyone, regardless of vidual to unique forms of disadvantage
enable the rights affirmed in the CRPD to be inter- discrimination, prejudice, ignorance, stigma their background, can achieve their full potential in and discrimination.
preted. It affirms the right of persons with disabilities and bias, among other reasons. Family life. Such efforts include policies and actions that
to enjoy “access, on an equal basis with others, to the members or people in the close network promote equal access to (public) services as well as Discrimination on the basis of disability can
physical environment, to transportation, to informa- of persons with disabilities may also face enable citizen’s participation in the decision-making target persons who currently have an impair-
tion and communications, including information and ‘discrimination by association’. Attitudinal processes that affect their lives.”32 ment, who had an impairment in the past,
communications technologies and systems, and to barriers are at the root of discrimination and who have a predisposition to an impairment
other facilities and services open or provided to the exclusion. Discrimination on the basis of disability refers to in the future, who are presumed to have an
public, both in urban and in rural areas”.22 Accessi- any distinction, exclusion or restriction on the basis impairment, and to associates of a person
bility is a precondition of inclusion: in its absence, Environmental barriers include physical of disability that has the purpose or effect of impair- with a disability. The latter is called discrim-
persons with disabilities cannot be included. obstacles in the natural or built environment ing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exer- ination by association.
that “prevent access and affect opportuni- cise, on an equal basis with others, of human rights
 niversal design is an approach that advo-
U ties for participation”,26 and inaccessible and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, Enablers are measures that remove barriers, or
cates that “the design of products, environ- communication systems. The latter do not social, cultural, civil or any other field. It includes all reduce their effects, and improve the resilience or
ments, programmes and services [should] allow persons with disabilities to access forms of discrimination, including failure to respond protection of persons with disabilities.
be usable by all people, to the greatest information or knowledge and thereby
extent possible, without the need for adapta-
Wapling & Downie, Beyond Charity: a Donor’s Guide to Inclusion (2012), p. 21; PPUA Penca (Center for Election Access of Citizens with Disabili-
27 

ties), Accessible elections for persons with disabilities in five Southeast Asian countries. USAID & AGENDA (2013), pp. 5, 11; WHO and World Bank,
World Report on Disability (2011), p. 4.
28 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011), p. 262.
29 
GSDRC, Barriers to disability inclusion.
21 
Modified from CRPD, article 1.  apling & Downie, Beyond Charity: a Donor’s Guide to Inclusion (2012), p. 21; DFID: Disability, Poverty and Development (2000), p. 8; WHO and World
W
30 

22 
CRPD, Article 9. Bank, World Report on Disability (2011), pp. 6, 262; Bruijn et al. (2012), Count Me In: Include people with disabilities in development projects (2012), p. 23
23 
CRPD, Article 2. 31 
United Nations Disability Inclusion Strategy website and UNDIS, Annex I. Key concepts and definitions
24 
National Disability Authority, What is Universal Design? 32 
UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Social Inclusion.
25 
WHO, Guidelines on health-related rehabilitation, p. 35. 33 
See CRPD, Article 4.
26 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011), pp. 4 and 263. 34 
See CRPD, Article 2.

8 9
2. What you need to know Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Inclusive budgeting occurs when an organiza- To see clearly how they affect access to resources or Analysing risks and barriers to the food distribution points, or acquisition of assistive
tion, during its planning process, allocates funds create risks for persons with disabilities, it is necessary inclusion of persons with disabilities in devices), persons with disabilities can improve their
to remove barriers and promote participation for to see how disability, age, gender and other factors humanitarian action individual resilience. Falling risk and rising resilience
persons with disabilities, and to provide targeted interrelate and to evaluate their overall effect.37 imply improved protection.
activities for persons with disabilities. Inclusive Reducing risk, improving resilience and
budgets should include costs for improving phys- Mainstreaming is the process of incorporating increasing protection
ical accessibility, providing reasonable accommo- CRPD in protection principles, promoting the safety What you should know in order to address
dations, and providing specialized non-food items and dignity of persons with disabilities, and ensur- Persons with disabilities face barriers that increase barriers
(NFIs), assistive devices, mobility equipment and ing they have meaningful access to humanitarian risk in humanitarian contexts. “Barriers can be either
accessible communications.35 support and can participate fully in humanitarian classified as a threat if put in place purposefully by This section describes general barriers faced by
interventions. Mainstreaming does not focus on an actor or as a vulnerability if happening as an inad- persons with disabilities during humanitarian crises.
Informed consent occurs when a  person will- what is done, but on how it is done. Disability should vertent act. In both cases, these barriers lead to Chapters 11 to 18 outline sector-specific barriers.
ingly agrees to do something or allow something be mainstreamed in all sectors and all phases of the exclusion, which increases the likelihood of persons To identify key actions and measures effectively,
(for example, a medical intervention, relocation, humanitarian programme cycle. with disabilities to face threats and vulnerabilities and plan and implement accessible and inclusive
the communication of personal information, the at a higher level than the rest of the crisis-affected humanitarian programmes, it is vital to understand
transfer of case documents, etc.) based on full Organizations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) population.”41 By making use of enablers (such as disability, accessibility and the concept of barriers.
disclosure of the risks, benefits, alternatives and should be rooted in and committed to the CRPD and support services in camps, facilitated access to
consequences of refusal. Persons with disabilities, should fully respect the principles and rights that it
particularly those with intellectual and psychoso- affirms. OPDs must be led, directed and governed
cial impairments, are very often denied the right by persons with disabilities. A clear majority of their
to express their consent. This is a violation of their memberships should be persons who have disabilities.38
rights under the CRPD.36 Diagram 3 | B
 arriers and enablers to inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action
Persons with disabilities “include those who have
Children are entitled to be consulted and to give their long-term physical, mental,39 intellectual or sensory
informed consent to the degree that their evolving impairments which, in interaction with various barri- To reduce risks,
capacities enable them to do so. ers, may hinder their full and effective participation Person with  you need to
Barrier Risk eliminate the
in society on an equal basis with others”.40 impairment
Intersectionality is an analytic framework that demon- barriers.
strates how forms of oppression (such as racism, Resilience describes the ability of a system, a person,
sexism, ableism) overlap, defining unique social a community or a society to resist, absorb, accom-
groups. An intersectional approach assumes that modate, adapt to, transform and recover from the
harms and violations associated with disability, race effects of a hazard in a timely and efficient way,
and ethnicity, gender, or other identities cannot be including by preserving and restoring essential struc- Resilience is
understood sufficiently by studying them separately. tures and functions through risk management. Resilence improved when
Person with 
Enabler Safety you identify and
impairment
Protection use enablers.
To meet the physical accessibility requirements of persons with disabilities (for example, when constructing buildings or WASH facilities), it is estimated
35 

that between 0.5 per cent and 1 per cent should be added to budgets. To provide specialized non-food items (NFIs) and mobility equipment to persons
with disabilities, estimates suggest a further 3-4 per cent, and up to 7 per cent, should be added. See Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, Humanitarian
inclusion standards for older people and people with disabilities, and Light for the World, Resource Book on Disability Inclusion (2017), p. 36.
Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, General comment No. 1 (2014) on Article 12: Equal recognition before the law CRPD/C/GC/1,
36 

19 May 2014. See also Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, General comment No. 6 (2018) on equality and non-discrimination,
CRPD/C/GC/6, 26 April 2018, para. 66. The IASC Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action states that information and data should not be dis-
closed in the absence of free and informed consent. See the section on definitions.
37 
See European Parliament Directorate-General for Internal Policies, Discrimination Generated by the Intersection of Gender and Disability (2013).
See also: Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, General Comment number 6 on equality and non-discrimination, CRPD/C/GC/6,
26 April 2018, para. 19.
38 
Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Guidelines on the Participation of Disabled Persons Organizations (DPOs) and Civil Society
Organizations in the work of the Committee, Annexe II of CRPD/C/11/2, para. 3. See also: CRPD Committee, General comment No. 7 (2018) on the
participation of persons with disabilities, including children with disabilities, through their representative organizations, in the implementation and
monitoring of the Convention, CRPD/C/GC/7, 9 November 2018.
39 
The CRPD referred to ‘mental’ impairment. The CRPD Committee subsequently preferred the term ‘psychosocial’ impairment.
40 
CRPD, Article 1. 41 
DG ECHO, The Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in EU-funded Humanitarian Aid Operations (2019, DG ECHO Operational Guidance).

10 11
2. What you need to know Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Persons with disabilities frequently face attitudinal, recognize that persons with the same impairment Examples of enablers and appropriate
environmental and institutional barriers in their daily may experience barriers differently, for many reasons Examples of barriers and misconceptions
assumptions
lives. Humanitarian crises exacerbate these and may including their sex, age, culture or socioeconomic
create new ones, further reducing their access to status. The complex forms and character of multiple
Persons with disabilities are unlikely to be able to Persons with disabilities have the right to take deci-
assistance and protection and hindering their partic- and intersecting discrimination and disability require
make decisions; others are likely to need to take sions on issues that affect them, and most can do so.
ipation in humanitarian action. It is also important to a multi-criteria risk assessment.
decisions for them in their best interest. Some, including those with psychosocial or intellec-
tual disabilities, may require support to understand
The role of families and social networks and make decisions.

Persons with disabilities cannot work and Persons with disabilities can work and can make
Families and social networks can operate as enablers to remove or reduce barriers that prevent the partic- therefore humanitarian organizations do not valuable contributions. It is important to discuss with
ipation of persons with disabilities. Supportive families can significantly reduce costs and promote inclu- hire them. them directly to identify their skills and interests.
sion, particularly for persons with disabilities who are stigmatized or excluded. However, families may act
as barriers as well as enablers. Humanitarian actors must ensure that the person with disabilities remains Persons with disabilities make people around them This may be the case, where high levels of stigma
at the centre of their intervention. uncomfortable. and misunderstanding exist. It is important to
conduct awareness-raising and sensitization to
challenge negative beliefs.
The left-hand column of the table below lists barriers The list is not exhaustive; more information on barri-
Providing reasonable accommodation for persons Accommodating the requirements of persons with
that occur in humanitarian contexts. The right-hand ers can be found in chapters 11 to 18.
with disabilities is too hard, too expensive. It is some- disabilities can be easy if you know what they need
column describes a disability-inclusive response.
one else’s responsibility. and how to provide it. Ask them. In most cases,
simple low-cost solutions can be found. All human-
A. Attitudinal barriers in humanitarian contexts. Social misconceptions or prejudices against persons itarian actors have a responsibility to ensure that
with disabilities may generate incorrect assumptions. their programmes are accessible and to provide
accommodations where necessary.
Examples of enablers and appropriate Local culture is often one source of prejudice and stigma against persons with disabilities.
Examples of barriers and misconceptions
assumptions Identify cultural and social barriers and address them in a culturally acceptable way.
All persons with disabilities died because they were While some persons with disabilities died, many
unable to flee. were able to flee. They are disproportionately repre-
sented among survivors. B. Environmental barriers in humanitarian contexts. Some environmental barriers are likely to be present
already. Humanitarian actors and local populations may unintentionally create others.
Persons with disabilities are victims who need to Persons with disabilities need assistance just like
be fully assisted. any other group in the affected population, but they
have capacities, resources and a voice, and many Examples of barriers Examples of enablers
can contribute to humanitarian action.
Registration and distribution points are located far Place registration and distribution points in loca-
Persons with disabilities have medical conditions Persons with disabilities have the same needs as away, uphill, across difficult terrain; transport is inac- tions everyone can access. If this is not possible,
and all need medical care. others, and some may require specific medical atten- cessible. provide transport or deliver services to individuals
tion. However, not all persons with disabilities will who cannot reach distribution points.
require medical care.
Food packages are too heavy to be carried by Identify support people to collect and carry the food
Health and medical services exclusively meet Humanitarian actors can deliver assistive devices persons with disabilities. packages of persons with disabilities.
disability-specific requirements, such as provision through a range of channels. They must neverthe-
of wheelchairs and assistive devices. less understand what types of devices persons with The latrine blocks are too narrow to accommodate Design and procurement documents foresee latrines
disabilities require to increase their ability to func- a wheelchair and support person. that are wheelchair accessible.
tion in the context and increase their capacities and
resilience. Tents and temporary shelters have steps and narrow Design and procurement documents foresee tempo-
entrances. rary shelters that are wheelchair accessible.

12 13
2. What you need to know Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Examples of barriers Examples of enablers Examples of barriers Examples of enablers

Water points have elevated pumps that are difficult Design and procurement documents foresee acces- Trained and qualified service providers and skilled Recruitment documents consider inclusion
to operate. sible water pumps. (Note that support may be staff (such as teachers and physicians) are not and encourage disability-specific experience.
required even for accessible designs.) available. Programmes train staff in principles of inclusion
and practical ways to promote it.
Coordination meetings take place in inaccessible The response makes sure that coordination meet-
buildings that fail the ‘Reach, Enter, Circulate and ings are convened in buildings and at sites that are Inclusion is not a donor requirement. OECD-DAC and a growing number of other donors
Use’ principle.42 accessible. include disability markers and want to focus more on
persons with disabilities.43 UN entities will be obliged
Information about humanitarian assistance is Information about humanitarian assistance is to report on their disability performance under the
provided using only one medium of communication provided in multiple accessible formats (oral, print, UN Disability Inclusion Strategy.
(for example, oral or written messages or posters). sign language, easy-to-read/plain language, etc.).
Human assistance is provided to those who need it Recruitment documents for humanitarian posts Recruitment policies comply with CRPD standards
to access information. require applicants to be in ‘good health’ and may and evaluate candidates based on their capacity to
exclude persons with disabilities on the grounds deliver the core functions of the advertised job, with
Humanitarian frameworks, codes of conduct and Key documents are made available in multiple that disability is a health issue. support if required.44
other key documents are not available in multiple accessible formats, including easy-to-read/plain
accessible formats, including easy-to-read/plain language formats. National laws prevent persons with disabilities from The response works with the government to develop
language formats. opening bank accounts (which can prevent them inclusive policies aligned with the CRPD. It works with
from accessing cash-based assistance), obtaining financial entities to make it easier for persons with
Consultations with the community (through focus Consultations are conducted in a range of formats, loans or credit, or owning land. disabilities to obtain cash safely and legally until new
group discussions, feedback and complaint mech- and persons with hearing, psychosocial or intel- laws or the courts allow them to open bank accounts.
anisms, etc.) are not conducted in multiple formats, lectual disabilities are supported to participate in
and persons with hearing, psychosocial or intellec- community consultations, focus group discussions, The legal capacity of persons with disabilities is Government supports inclusive policies aligned with
tual disabilities are not supported to understand or feedback and complaint mechanisms. restricted,45 reducing their access to legal protection, the CRPD. Support persons and services are avail-
participate in them. as well as their authority to take decisions and give able to support persons with disabilities to make
free and informed consent. informed decisions, with safeguards to ensure they
do not take decisions under duress. The policies of
C. Institutional barriers and enablers in humanitarian contexts. In many countries, few or no policies humanitarian organizations do not impose barriers
promote or ensure the inclusion of persons with disabilities. based on legal capacity.

Humanitarian organizations have no disability-inclu- Policies ensure the inclusion of persons with
Examples of barriers Examples of enablers sive policies and lack accountability mechanisms to disabilities. Accountability mechanisms measure
measure their performance on disability inclusion. improvements in performance. The UNDIS guides
Government policies and legal frameworks relevant Government policies support inclusive approaches This inhibits the development of an organizational humanitarian organizations as they develop inclu-
to humanitarian action and the policies of human- aligned with the CRPD. Where appropriate, UN enti- culture that properly supports persons with disabilities. sion frameworks.46
itarian organizations do not promote or ensure the ties, UN country teams and UN humanitarian coun-
inclusion of persons with disabilities. try teams comply with the UN Disability Inclusion The humanitarian structure has no Area of Respon- Disability is a standing agenda item in protection
Strategy (UNDIS). sibility (AoR) for disability. and inter-agency meetings. A person is appointed
with responsibility for disability.
Cash-for-work programmes and other employment Cash-for-work and other employment programmes
programmes do not consider the abilities of persons consider the abilities of persons with disabilities and Needs assessments are not disaggregated by disabil- Persons with disabilities are targeted in needs
with disabilities and do not employ them. support services are respectful of their autonomy ity. This hinders understanding of the extent to which assessments. Data are disaggregated and risks are
(and provide personal assistance or interpretation). persons with disabilities experience particular risks. evaluated in detail.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Handbook for the marker for the inclusion and empowerment of persons with disabilities (2019).
43 

44 
International Labour Organization, Promoting diversity and inclusion through workplace adjustments: a practical guide.
‘Legal capacity’ refers to a person’s entitlement to perform valid legal actions, to marry, enter into an employment contract, administer his or her money, accept
45 

42 
A location or building is accessible when a person with disabilities can reach it, enter it, circulate from one room or floor to another, and use the or reject medical treatment, etc. Most countries deny this right to persons with intellectual and psychosocial impairments, although doing so breaches the CRPD.
services it offers. 46 
United Nations, Disability Inclusion Strategy. See also the ILO Model Self-Assessment Tool developed for businesses as proxy.

14 15
2. What you need to know Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

An inclusive response requires several levels of inter- When no mainstream solutions are available, actors A reasonable accommodation is an individual Specific needs. Human needs (for food, shelter,
vention. Given that persons with disabilities have should be ready to provide reasonable accommo- measure that benefits a specific person – but may health services, etc.) are universal. Persons with
specific requirements, the CRPD advocates plan- dations to meet the requirements of persons with also bring wider benefits. For instance, a path that disabilities share those needs with all other human
ning on two axes: (i) to progressively develop acces- disabilities. is made accessible for one person can subse- beings. Persons with disabilities may require action
sible and inclusive environments and interventions; quently be used by many. The same may be true to meet needs that are specific to them (accessibility,
and (ii) to deliver customized solutions that enable of changing the procedure for obtaining cash trans- communication, personal assistance, etc.). Rights-
persons with disabilities to participate immediately. fers, reorganizing food distribution methods, or based actors usually replace the term ‘specific needs’
reorganizing work to meet the needs of a colleague with the term ‘specific requirements’, because this
with a disability. (See Annex 1: Providing reason- places the emphasis on realizing their rights.
Take steps to ensure the provision of reasonable accommodation/adjustments able accommodations.)
Additional considerations on terminology:
‘Reasonable accommodation’ means necessary and appropriate modification and adjustments, not
Accessibility provides just one example of reason-
imposing a disproportionate or undue burden, where needed in a particular case, to ensure to persons
with disabilities the enjoyment or exercise on an equal basis with others of all human rights and funda-
able accommodation. Accountability procedures • Use person-first terminology. (For exam-
may be adjusted for certain persons who cannot ple, choose ‘person with a disability’ rather
mental freedoms. (CRPD, Article 2.)
maintain their attention for long periods; cash for than ‘disabled person’; and ‘girl who is blind’
money programmes might extend the time slots they or ‘girl with a vision impairment’ rather than
To explain how humanitarian actors can balance ments; (iv) buys or acquires goods, facilities, mate- offer to accommodate the requirements of a person ‘blind girl’.)
mainstream or structural solutions and individ- rials, technologies, etc; and (v) distributes and for whom travel is a significant barrier, etc.47
ual accommodations, consider accessibility. delivers the chosen goods or services against • Avoid terms that have negative connotations,
A humanitarian actor that wants to improve acces- a planned timetable or schedule. Because deny- such as ‘suffer’, ‘suffering’, ‘victim’ or ‘handi-
sibility usually does so in steps. It (i) initiates an ing reasonable accommodation is discrimination, Rights-based terminology capped’. Speak of a ‘wheelchair user’ rather
assessment; (ii) evaluates alternative actions; the humanitarian actor also must offer individual than a person who is ‘wheelchair-bound’ or
(iii) prepares a procurement process and docu- solutions on demand. The terms used to address or refer to persons with ‘confined to a wheelchair’.
disabilities can diminish or empower them. Below

Bridging the gap between accessibility and individual adjustments


are some key terms to be aware of: • Speak of persons ‘without impairments’ rather
than ‘normal’ or ‘regular’ persons.
Vulnerable/vulnerability. Persons with disabilities
A programme or service is accessible if… Reasonable accommodation is achieved if… are not inherently vulnerable. Rather, vulnerability is • Do not use acronyms to refer to children with
imposed on them, including by barriers and lack of disabilities (e.g. CWD) or persons with disabil-
support. Rights-based language usually uses vulner- ities (e.g. PWD).48
It can be implemented promptly. It can be provided immediately (avoiding discrim-
ability with a qualifier. For example, ‘girls with disabil-
ination).
ities are more vulnerable to sexual violence when • Use appropriate terms to refer to different
they are separated from family members and care- types of impairment, including physical,
It offers a general solution. It is an individual solution.
givers’ or ‘boys with disabilities are more vulnerable visual/vision, hearing, intellectual and psycho-
to bullying than boys without disabilities’. social impairments.
It is available and accessible regardless of whether It is delivered when a  person with disabil-
Carer/caregiver. A carer or caregiver is commonly
it is required. ities requires it, and when they cannot
defined as a person (a family member or paid helper)
otherwise obtain access to it.
who regularly looks after a child, a sick person, an
older person, or a person with a disability. Rights-
It is guided by general principles of universal design. It is tailored to meet the person’s requirements
based actors tend to prefer the term ‘support’, rather
and designed together with the person.
than ‘care’, when speaking of adults with disabili-
ties (for example, personal assistance, peer support,
It meets accessibility standards. It meets a proportionality test.
support person).

47 
See ILO, Promoting diversity and inclusion through workplace adjustments: a practical guide (2016).
48 
 he CRPD uses the terms ‘children with disabilities’ and ‘persons with disabilities’. Because children and adults with disabilities are often stigma-
T
tized and face discrimination, they prefer to be called a ‘child’ and a ‘person’ rather than referred to as an acronym.

16 17
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

3
What to do:
key approaches
to programming

3. What to do: key approaches to programming

Persons with disabilities must be able to access • They should provide transport allowances to
humanitarian assistance and interventions on the persons with disabilities, to enable them to
same terms as other members of the population. access services.
This requires a twin-track approach that combines
inclusive mainstream programmes with targeted • They should deliver food and non-food items
interventions for persons with disabilities. to persons with disabilities who are unable to
reach distribution sites.
First, mainstream humanitarian programmes and
interventions, designed for the whole population, The twin-track approach is critical to the inclusion of
need to include persons with disabilities. Their plan- persons with disabilities in humanitarian action. It
ning, design, implementation and evaluation should should be adopted by all stakeholders in all sectors.
reflect this objective. For example:

• Information should be disseminated in Must do actions


multiple accessible formats (oral, print, sign
language, easy-to-read/plain language, etc.). ‘Must do’ actions are required if persons with disabil-
ities are to be included successfully in all phases of
• Distribution sites should be placed in loca- humanitarian action and need to be taken by every
tions that are accessible to everyone, includ- stakeholder in every sector and all contexts.
ing persons with disabilities.
The four ‘must do’ actions described below should
• Communal latrine blocks should be accessi- be kept in mind when reading or applying each sector
ble to persons with disabilities – they should chapter and the section on stakeholder roles and
be physically accessible and provide clear responsibilities.
signage.
Promote meaningful participation
Second, humanitarian programmes need to
address the specific requirements of persons with The Convention on the Rights of Persons with
disabilities by providing targeted interventions. Disabilities (CRPD)49 affirms the right to partic-
For example: ipate in decision-making processes. Persons
with disabilities are therefore entitled to partic-
• They should make assistive devices available. ipate in humanitarian decisions that affect them.

The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Global Compact for Refugees, the Global Compact for Migration, among many others,
49 

also require humanitarian and other actors to consult and involve persons with disabilities in their programmes and decisions.

19
3. What to do: key approaches to programming Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Both on the basis of this right, and because they Empower persons with disabilities; Disaggregate data for monitoring inclusion
have knowledge and skills to offer, persons with support them to develop their capacities 
disabilities can be important actors and resource To monitor inclusion, data on barriers and on the See also the section on Data and
persons in a humanitarian response. Humanitarian stakeholders, including organiza- requirements of persons with disabilities are essen- information management.
tions of persons with disabilities (OPDs), need tial. Humanitarian data should include disaggre-
first to develop their own awareness of the rights gated data on disability to ensure that humanitarian
Key actions and capacities of persons with disabilities. Then action planning, implementation and monitoring
they need to work with persons with disabilities are accessible to and include persons with disabil-
• Enable persons with disabilities to partic- to strengthen and extend their capacities. These ities. Data and information on risks and barriers
ipate in all processes that assess, plan, steps together empower both groups of stake- faced by persons with disabilities should also
design, implement, monitor or evaluate holders to cooperate in ensuring that persons be collected and analysed. This will strengthen
humanitarian programmes, in all phases with disabilities are fully included in all aspects of humanitarian stakeholders’ understanding of the
and at all levels. humanitarian assistance and protection. barriers to inclusion, which in turn will enable them
to remove them effectively and adopt measures to
• Recruit persons with disabilities as staff Capacity development may take many forms. promote inclusion.
at all levels of humanitarian organizations,
including as front-line workers and commu- Consider, for instance: introducing sensitization,
nity mobilizers. training and learning sessions, and sessions to
coach and mentor staff; revising training tools, Key actions
• Seek advice and collaborate with organi- including induction and training courses; creating
zations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) communities of practice; collecting experiences • Where data are unavailable, humanitarian
when you devise strategies for engaging (lessons learned) and identifying good practices;
stakeholders, in partnership with OPDs,
with persons with disabilities in an affected providing technical support, including disability
should collect data on sex, age and disability
community. inclusion experts; communicating skills through
using a variety of tools tested in humanitar-
advice and help desks, etc.
ian contexts. These include the Washington
Group Short Set of Disability Questions and
Remove barriers
the UNICEF-Washington Group Child Func-
Key actions tioning Module, as well as data related to
Neither inclusion nor participation can be achieved
risks and barriers.
while barriers remain. Removing attitudinal, envi- • As a priority, develop the capacities of
ronmental and institutional barriers is critical to
persons with disabilities and OPDs in the • Use data on disability to monitor equal
field of humanitarian action. Equip them with access, design inclusive programmes, and
addressing risks.50 plan their implementation. Ensure that
the knowledge, skills and leadership skills
they need to contribute to and benefit from persons with disabilities can participate at
every level.
Key actions humanitarian assistance and protection.51

• Build the capacity of humanitarian work- • Disaggregating data by sex, age and disabil-
• Identify all attitudinal, environmental and ers. Assist them to design and implement ity makes it possible to develop appropriate
institutional barriers that prevent persons indicators and use them to monitor the inclu-
with disabilities from accessing humani- inclusive humanitarian programmes that
are accessible to persons with disabilities sion of persons with disabilities in all phases
tarian programmes and services. Identify of humanitarian action.
enablers that facilitate the participation of by strengthening their understanding of the
persons with disabilities. rights of persons with disabilities as well
as principles and practical approaches that
• Take appropriate measures to remove barri- promote inclusion and reduce barriers to
ers and to promote enablers, to ensure that inclusion.
persons with disabilities have access to
assistance and can participate meaningfully.

50 
See the section on Barriers.
51 
Include key humanitarian action concepts and tools in training that is offered.

20 21
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

4
Data and
Information
management

4. Data and information management

Introduction: Why collect data on  possible to identify factors that reduce the
persons with disabilities? risks that persons with disabilities face and
enhance their resilience.
Quality humanitarian programming is built on an
understanding of the requirements and priorities 4. To understand the views and priorities of
of persons with disabilities during a crisis. This persons with disabilities. Without this infor-
understanding is generated by: (1) identifying the mation, humanitarian organizations cannot
population of persons with disabilities; (2) analysing be accountable to affected populations (AAP).
the risks that persons with disabilities face and the
factors that contribute to those risks; (3) identifying 5. To map the capacity and resources of organi-
barriers that impede persons with disabilities from zations contributing to the response, includ-
accessing humanitarian assistance; and (4) under- ing organizations of persons with disabilities
standing the roles and capacities of persons with (OPDs). This information underpins the devel-
disabilities in the humanitarian response. opment of local partnerships and efforts to
identify gaps in capacity.
To build this foundation of understanding, it is import-
ant to obtain data on persons with disabilities. Specif- 6. To monitor the degree to which persons
ically, data are required for the following purposes: with disabilities have access to assistance,
services and facilities, and identify attitu-
1. To identify individuals with disabilities, dinal, physical, institutional and communi-
and households that include persons with cation barriers that impede accessibility.
disabilities, in order to monitor their situation, Without this information, humanitarian orga-
target assistance and set response priorities. nizations cannot improve their programmes
and mechanisms, remove barriers, or
2. To identify the total number of persons increase the participation of persons with
with disabilities in the affected popula- disabilities. This information also informs
tion. This makes it possible to calculate decisions on training, awareness-raising
accurately the general and specific require- and capacity gaps.
ments of persons with disabilities in the
affected population and mobilize appropri- 7. To strengthen the evidence base that
ate resources to meet those requirements. informs advocacy initiatives and resource
mobilization.
3. To understand how the crisis affects
persons with disabilities, including its Collecting data on persons with disabilities is
effects on mortality, nutrition and food secu- also an obligation for States that have ratified the
rity, livelihoods, health, protection, and other Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabili-
essential needs. This information makes it ties (CRPD). Article 31 of the CRPD, on statistics and

23
4. Data and information management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

data collection, requires States Parties to “undertake What types of data are needed? Tools for disaggregating data by disability capacities. The purpose of data collection should
to collect appropriate information, including statis- determine what types of data are collected.
tical and research data” and states that data “shall The decisions or actions that a humanitarian It is important to disaggregate data by disability
be disaggregated, as appropriate, and used to help response needs to take will determine what kinds in order to understand the different ways in which 2. Identify sources of (secondary) data on
assess the implementation of States Parties’ obli- of data it needs to collect. persons with disabilities experience a crisis and to persons with disabilities
gations under the present Convention and to iden- monitor their access to assistance. In principle, data
tify and address the barriers faced by persons with disaggregated by sex and age should also be disag-  What information is needed to answer the key
disabilities in exercising their rights.” gregated by disability. questions? Always start with information that
is already available.
The most widely tested tools used to generate
• To identify individuals with disabilities and calculate the number of
persons with disabilities in an affected population (via registration
comparable data about persons with disabilities  • Make use of official data sources, such as
are the Washington Group Question Sets and the government databases, international moni-
data, household surveys, household estimates, etc.).
World Health Organization’s Disability Assessment toring mechanisms (including the reports
• To determine the number and location of accessible and inaccessi- Schedule. There is a growing consensus52 that the by UN human rights treaty bodies, Special
ble facilities. Washington Group Short Set of Disability Questions Procedures of the Human Rights Coun-
Quantitative data generates sound, internationally comparable data cil and Universal Periodic Reviews, the
• To disaggregate data on needs and risks (for example, the number or
(information that can be that can be disaggregated and collected without High Level Political Forum for Sustainable
proportion of food insecure households that are headed by persons
discrimination and added quickly and inexpensively Development, and reports of the UN Secre-
measured and calculated) with disabilities).
to censuses and surveys. It is being used increas- tary-General), and information compiled by
may be used. • To monitor access to assistance (for example, establish the number ingly in humanitarian contexts. (See Annex 2 for a humanitarian actors, development projects
or proportion of participants in livelihood programmes who are short overview of these tools, including commentary and OPDs. (See Annex 3 for a more detailed
persons with disabilities). on their use in humanitarian contexts.) overview of secondary data sources and
• To monitor protection concerns (for example, establish the number their use.)
of human rights violations, or types of human rights violation, expe- It is important to understand that these tools can be
rienced by persons with disabilities). used to disaggregate data but are not useful for the  • However, it is important to recognize that
identification of particular health conditions or diag- these figures may significantly underesti-
nostic categories.53 They should not be employed for mate the number of persons with disabili-
• To collate the views and priorities of persons with disabilities, for
individual assessment or targeting in the absence ties and may not accurately describe their
example via feedback and complaint processes.
of complementary data on needs and risk factors, needs, views and priorities. It is therefore
• To understand the risks and barriers that persons with disabilities including barriers. necessary to evaluate the quality, robust-
face, as well as enabling factors, for example via focus group discus- ness and completeness, as well as compa-
sions and key informant interviews. rability, of secondary data on persons
• To identify specific risks, barriers and enablers to accessing assis- Collecting and using data on persons with with disabilities. (See Annex 4 for advice
tance that persons with disabilities encounter, for example through disabilities: key steps on how to evaluate data on persons with
Qualitative data policy and document reviews. disabilities.)
Data on persons with disabilities need to be collected
(information that is • To monitor protection concerns, for example by privately interview-
descriptive) may be used.
at each phase of the humanitarian programme cycle.  • The situation may also have changed since
ing persons with disabilities about the human rights violations they The following key steps should be taken at each phase: the secondary information was collected.
have experienced. In particular, it may have changed as a
• To obtain detailed information about the knowledge, attitudes and 1. Identify information needs result of the humanitarian crisis, espe-
perceptions of humanitarian actors and local communities with cially where large numbers of people have
regard to persons with disabilities, for example via surveys or inter-  What is the question that needs to be answered been displaced. The number of persons
views. or the decision that needs to be made? Consider with disabilities, and their proportion in the
why data are being collected on persons with population, frequently increase as a result
• To map OPDs and accessible services, for example by gathering 5W disabilities. Purposes might include: to under- of crises, because these disrupt services,
data (Who does what, when, where and for whom?).
stand the impact of a crisis; to identify barri- create new barriers, and cause injuries and
ers that prevent persons with disabilities from psychological stress.
accessing assistance; to map resources and

52 
Daniel Mont and Nora Groce, Counting disability: emerging consensus on the Washington Group questionnaire, The Lancet, July 2017.
53 
Daniel Mont, How does the WG-SS Differ from Disability Eligibility Determination? (2017), Washington Group on Disability Statistics.

24 25
4. Data and information management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

3. Fill critical information gaps • Additional data enables the response to • Other national, provincial and district-level Needs assessment and analysis
understand problems in more detail. It is very initiatives that compile data on persons with
• Include questions relevant to persons with important to involve OPDs in such work. disabilities, and households that include While sound quantitative data are more often avail-
disabilities in needs assessment tools and persons with disabilities, such as national able, not least due to more widespread use of the
monitoring and evaluation processes. • Put in place appropriate protections when censuses or national social protection Washington Group Question Sets, significant data
collecting, analysing, storing, sharing, using, systems. gaps remain and data on persons with disabilities
• Conduct separate data collection exercises destroying or archiving sensitive personal are not consistently robust or comparable. Available
that focus on persons with disabilities where data. Refer to the section on managing data • Data collected by OPDs or specialized NGOs, secondary data may also be unreliable for a variety
it is relevant and feasible to do so. Sepa- and information in Professional Standards for such as project reports. of reasons, including different understandings of
rate collection can be particularly valuable Protection Work.54 disability, underreporting due to stigma, different
when analysis has flagged that persons with Additional actions to compile information at the standards for classifying or measuring disability,
disabilities experience specific risks or acces- preparedness stage might include: sampling limitations, inconsistencies in the ques-
sibility gaps. tions asked, or simply because the sources are out
 • Map information on local OPDs and local or of date. (See Annex 4 for a more detailed overview.)
national services for persons with disabilities,
such as sign language interpreters, compa- When Multi-Sector Needs Assessments (MSNA)
nies that offer accessible transport, and analyse the severity of a population’s needs, they
See the section on Needs assessment for more detailed guidance providers of assistive devices. should examine the impact of a situation on persons
with disabilities and their families. When household
• Map accessible public facilities and other infra- surveys are used as a source of data in the MSNA,
structure that can be used as service delivery disability data should be collected that will enable
The importance of informed consent in data collection and use points. Link this information to the common disaggregation of all data by disability.
operational dataset (COD) maintained by the
All individuals have a right to make informed decisions on whether their personal data are collected and Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian When robust quantitative data do not exist, it is
how their personal data are used. Those who collect personal data need to be able to explain how and Affairs (OCHA) at the country level. recommended to assume that 15 per cent of an
for what purpose that data will be used and provide assurances with respect to its confidentiality. affected population has a disability.57 The 15 per cent
• Train staff or partners in the use of tools for estimate informs planning as well as efforts to moni-
To enable persons with disabilities to give their informed consent, information on the use of their data may collecting data on persons with disabilities. tor access to assistance. (For example, it is assumed
need to be provided in multiple formats. It may also be necessary to allocate more time for explanation Identify and train local actors, including OPDs, that 15 per cent of all facilities must be accessible.)
and arriving at a decision. Some persons with disabilities may wish to ask a trusted person to support as enumerators.55
them in making an informed decision. For a needs assessment to be inclusive, persons
• Translate tools for collecting data on persons with disabilities must be key informants and must
Information and data should be protected. For example, avoid identifying individuals who might subse- with disabilities into relevant languages, participate in focus group discussions.
quently as a result be harassed, persecuted or killed. including languages used by host and
displaced communities.56

Data on persons with disabilities across the • Government databases, such as Health or • To understand how the concerns of the general population might be
humanitarian programme cycle Education Management Information Systems
experienced differently by women, men, girls and boys with different
(EMIS). Care must be taken when using such
disabilities. In addition, to understand specific concerns that persons
Preparedness sources after a crisis because the situa-
with disabilities may have.
tion will have changed and the data may no Objectives of an
• To understand the roles of persons with disabilities in the community.
Gathering of reliable information about persons longer reflect the demography or needs of the inclusive needs
Include their contributions to the community and how other people in
with disabilities is a key component of prepared- affected population. assessment focus group. the community support them.
ness before a crisis. Annex 3 discusses potential
sources of secondary data. Sources of secondary • Internationally comparable household • To understand how persons with disabilities have experienced past
data include: surveys, such as Multiple Indicator Cluster emergencies and identify the barriers they faced and the coping mech-
Surveys (MICS) and Demographic and Health anisms they used.
Surveys (DHS).
Useful resources, including a training pack for enumerators on using the Washington Group Short Set of Disability Questions, can be found at
55 

54 
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situations Humanity and Inclusion, Disability Data in Humanitarian Action.
of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).
56 
See Washington Group’s translation methodology and training tools online.
57 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).

26 27
4. Data and information management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

• Seek to identify persons with disabilities who can represent the views
and priorities of the group. • Data on the number of persons with disabilities output indicator level. These indicators can reflect
in an affected population (including provisional actions taken to improve accessibility to assistance,
• Through purposive sampling, select a diverse range of persons with numbers based on the 15 per cent estimate)59 can measure participation, or provide targeted support
Select the focus group. disabilities. Consider differences of risk and barriers, take account of
inform sector plans and guide planning and moni- to persons with disabilities.
intersectionality and variations in age, gender and diversity. Include
toring, ensuring that programmes are adequately
persons with different types of disability.
resourced and appropriately accessible. Annex 5 discusses how output indicators can be
• Offer to consult individually those who cannot participate in focus groups. formulated to identify the extent to which persons
• Consult OPDs and persons with disabilities to agree on local commu- with disabilities are included. Indicators are also
nication preferences. Resource mobilization being developed to monitor the CRPD, including
Article 11 on disabilities in humanitarian action.
Make the arrangements. • Train focus group interviewers in accessible communication methods.58
Data on persons with disabilities can also help to See Bridging the Gap.
• Select accessible and safe interview venues suitable for persons with mobilize resources, by highlighting the impact of
disabilities. the crisis on persons with disabilities, specifying
the particular risks faced by individual persons with Implementation and monitoring
disabilities and their households, and revealing
In addition to disaggregating results by disability, Strategic planning the overall cost of meeting the requirements of all Implementation monitoring should identify both how
needs assessments should integrate qualitative persons with disabilities affected by the crisis. humanitarian assistance reaches persons with disabil-
information that is relevant to persons with disabil- To plan an inclusive response, it is essential to ities and how their needs change as a crisis evolves.
ities. Questions might include: have information on persons with disabilities. This said, budgeting for accessibility should not rely
For example: on data collection. Estimates suggest that, to meet Disaggregated data collected via monitoring tools
• Do persons with disabilities experience any physical accessibility requirements for persons with and processes help to identify gaps in accessibility
specific forms of discrimination or targeted • Data disaggregated by disability can highlight disabilities (to construct buildings and WASH facili- for persons with disabilities. When monitoring iden-
violence? the degree to which disability is associated ties), between 0.5 per cent and 1 per cent should be tifies such gaps, targeted data collection exercises
with vulnerability to livelihood or food insecu- budgeted. To include specialized non-food items (including focus group discussions, and interviews
• What barriers do persons with disabilities face rity, violence, exploitation and abuse, or other and mobility equipment, up to an additional 3–7 per with persons with disabilities from the affected
when they attempt to access assistance? risks. This information can assist the response cent budget is recommended.60 population, local OPDs, and humanitarian stakehold-
to prioritize and target assistance. ers) may be necessary to understand the nature of
• What formats and channels of communi- Donors could further strengthen the inclusion of the barriers that persons with disabilities face and
cation are most accessible to persons with • Disaggregated data can reveal where persons persons with disabilities by requiring humanitar- design measures to remove them.
disabilities? with disabilities are unable to access assistance, ian actors to disaggregate by disability, deliver
making it possible to refocus or strengthen results frameworks that include specific outputs or To promote systematic monitoring of access to assis-
• Are specific services that persons with disabil- services and remove gaps in accessibility. outcome indicators for persons with disabilities, and tance, a humanitarian response should ensure that
ities require (such as assistive technologies) Follow-up assessments may be needed to anal- use resource tracking markers to identify projects contracts and monitoring templates for implement-
available/not available? yse barriers and design steps to remove them. that are disability-inclusive. ing partners require them to report on the number
or proportion of persons with disabilities their
• What are the beliefs and practices of the • Qualitative information about the views and Outcomes on equal access and inclusion may be programmes have reached. Situation reports, human-
affected population in relation to persons with perceptions of persons with disabilities assist identified most clearly by analysing disaggregated itarian dashboards and other reporting mechanisms
disabilities? Are harmful beliefs and practices humanitarian organizations to respond more data in the course of monitoring. To illustrate, one should record progress in reaching persons with
prevalent? inclusively and appropriately. option is to include a specific indicator on disability, disabilities, including by use of disaggregated data.
such as ‘Number of children with disabilities access-
The above questions (adapted where necessary) • Qualitative data on the coping mechanisms of ing education’. However, better results may be Protection monitoring is an important tool for identi-
can also be asked of humanitarian actors, including persons with disabilities can help humanitar- achieved if general questions (‘Number of children fying the specific and heightened risks that persons
first responders. ian organizations to design interventions that accessing education’) are disaggregated by disabil- with disabilities face. The information it generates
increase resilience. ity. Generally, it will be most meaningful to reflect can inform responses that reduce risk and can
The answers can help the response not only to under- specific disability-related considerations at the enhance resilience. Where possible,61 protection
stand local knowledge, attitudes and practices but
to design protection programmes, advocacy, and 59 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).
appropriate capacity-building activities.
See Humanitarian inclusion standards for older people and people with disabilities and Light fsor the World, Resource Book on Disability Inclusion
60 

(2017), p. 36.
This may not always be feasible. It may not be feasible, for example, when incidents are reported by third party witnesses, or incidents involve com-
61 

58 
For more guidance on inclusive communication, see UNICEF, Disabilities, Inclusive Communication Module. munities or groups rather than individuals.

28 29
4. Data and information management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

monitoring data should be disaggregated by disabil- • Identify reliable sources of data on persons Strategic planning evaluation terms of reference in humanitarian
ity. Protection monitoring processes should also aim with disabilities, including censuses, adminis- contexts should require humanitarian actors
to identify protection risks specific to persons with trative databases, and data collected by OPDs • Use data on persons with disabilities to inform to disaggregate data by disability where data
disabilities. These include targeted violence, harmful or specialized NGOs. planning and to prioritize and target assistance. are collected on individuals (whether they bene-
practices, use of restraint, and institutionalization. fit from or contribute to the response). Further,
• Map information on OPDs, accessible services evaluations should include persons with disabil-
and public facilities. Resource mobilization ities among their informants, and questions
Evaluation should be asked that elicit specific information
• Build capacity to collect data on persons with • The demand for data on persons with disabili- on persons with disabilities.
To promote disability inclusion in evaluations of disabilities by training local actors and identi- ties in humanitarian action would be strength-
humanitarian action, standard evaluation terms of fying and translating key data collection tools. ened by appropriate donor policies and reporting • Evaluators might develop disability-specific
reference should require data to be disaggregated requirements, results frameworks that include indicators to measure progress towards reach-
by disability whenever data are collected on indi- • When surveys such as the DHS, MICS and national specific output or outcome indicators related ing persons with disabilities. Indicators might
viduals (whether they benefit from or contribute to censuses are conducted in countries at high to persons with disabilities, and resource track- measure, for example, the percentage of persons
the response). Further, evaluations should include humanitarian risk, emphasize the value of using ing using markers to identify projects that are with disabilities reached by specific interventions.
persons with disabilities among the informants, and incorporating tools tested in humanitarian disability-inclusive.
and ask questions that elicit specific information contexts, such as the Washington Group Short
on persons with disabilities. Set of Disability Questions and the UNICEF-Wash- • Targets related to persons with disabilities Key terms63
ington Group Child Functioning Module. Identify should be explicitly referenced in funding
Depending on its purpose, an evaluation should other entry points in humanitarian data collection appeals and projects. Quantitative data shed light on the magnitude, the
consider how persons with disabilities have processes where use of these methodologies is scale and the effects of a humanitarian crisis by
accessed assistance; how persons with disabilities appropriate, such as the Displacement Tracking providing a statistical description of its impact on
participated across the humanitarian programme Mechanism managed by IOM. Implementation and monitoring affected communities. Quantitative data address
cycle; and how the response reduced the risks that questions that generate countable answers, such
persons with disabilities face and enhanced their • Disaggregation of data collected through moni- as ‘how many’, ‘how much’, or ‘how often’.
resilience. In doing so, it should also capture good Needs assessment and analysis toring tools and processes, including protection
practices that promote inclusion. Evaluators might monitoring, is key to identifying accessibility and Qualitative data shed light on the magnitude, the
want to develop specific indicators to measure • Organizations with relevant capacity should other gaps for persons with disabilities. scale and the effects of a humanitarian crisis by an
progress in reaching and including persons with work with Assessment Working Groups to experiential description of its impact on affected
disabilities; these might, for example, measure the include disability in needs assessments and • Modify standard data collection tools and data- communities. Qualitative data address questions
proportion of persons with disabilities that specific associated analyses. bases used in humanitarian action to include that involve opinions, values, beliefs and conjectures.
interventions reached. qualitative data on how effectively programmes Why have coping strategies adapted or failed to adapt
• Collect information on services that include and and interventions are reaching persons with to changed circumstances? How does a displaced
Annex 6 sets out evaluation criteria in humanitarian target persons with disabilities in humanitarian disabilities. person with disabilities feel about her situation? What
action using OECD-DAC criteria definitions. It applies contexts. To do so, modify operational manage- does she believe would improve her situation?
these criteria from a disability-related perspective ment tools such as the standard 5W process. • Contracts and reporting templates for imple-
and, as an example, proposes an issue that could menting partners in a humanitarian response Primary data are collected directly from an affected
be examined in a humanitarian context. • In protracted crises, humanitarian actors have should require them to define and report the population by an assessment team through field
an opportunity to improve data collection tech- number or proportion of persons with disabil- work. Primary data may be quantitative or qualitative.
niques. Some situations are stable enough to ities that their interventions reach.
Summary of key elements: data collection permit population-level surveys, but often the Secondary data are gathered from previous statisti-
and information management mobility of affected populations is such that cal and analytical research (census data, data from
innovative statistical techniques must be used Evaluation previous surveys, studies). Secondary data may be
Preparedness to collect random samples. quantitative or qualitative.
• Effective evaluation depends on regular moni-
• Develop guidance on how humanitarian actors • Where reliable data on persons with disabilities toring and data collection, including registra-
can strengthen data collection to enhance the are unavailable or outdated, use the 15 per cent tion processes in refugee situations. Standard
inclusion of persons with disabilities, while safe- estimate62 as a benchmark for planning purposes.
guarding privacy and data protection.

62 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011). 63 
ACAPS, Qualitative and Quantitative Research Techniques for Humanitarian Needs Assessment (2012).

30 31
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Partnerships and

5
empowerment of
organizations of
persons with disabilities


5. Partnerships and empowerment of organizations of persons with disabilities

Introduction: what are organizations  • Represent a large or small group; an OPD may
of persons with disabilities? not seek to represent all persons with disabil-
ities.
Organizations of persons with disabilities (OPDs)
are representative organizations of persons with • Be organized in a local or national network,
disabilities, majority-governed and led by persons which may belong to one or more regional or
with disabilities for persons with disabilities. When global networks.
local OPDs are not present in a location, regional,
national and global OPDs can be located through
global alliances. Partnerships with organizations 
of persons with disabilities
OPDs generally undertake advocacy, guidance, train-
ing and technical assistance, and promote rights Partnerships and collaboration improve the effective-
through a social and human rights model of inclusion ness and accountability of humanitarian operations.
and empowerment. OPDs have successfully worked They help directly to achieve inclusion and ensure that
to reform national legislation and raise awareness, humanitarian action benefits from and contributes to
and many have trained humanitarian actors, commu- development. Respectful of the disability communi-
nities, governments and national disaster offices in ty’s motto (‘Nothing about us, without us’), human-
the rights of persons with disabilities. itarian stakeholders must work with persons with
disabilities and their representative organizations
OPDs are distinct from organizations that directly rather than plan or make decisions on their behalf.
provide services to persons with disabilities.
As with any partnership, common interests, added
Organizations of persons with disabilities may: value, expectations and capacity development
should be agreed from the beginning.
• Work locally, nationally, regionally or globally.
Partnerships between OPDs and humanitarian
• Focus on one type of disability or cross-dis- stakeholders before, during and after a crisis:
ability.
• Give humanitarian actors access to the exper-
• Represent one specific group (for exam- tise of persons with disabilities, to their expe-
ple, women, or indigenous persons, with rience and their knowledge of the situations
disabilities). in which they live.

33
5. Partnerships and empowerment of organizations of persons with disabilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

• Generate skills and knowledge that can make • Act as focal points in their communities, • Engage with persons with disabilities and Tools and resources
humanitarian services and assistance more applying their expertise on disability. their families at community or camp level
inclusive, informed and supported by the and encourage them to participate in consul- • Accessible Meeting and Event Checklist
populations that humanitarian actors assist. • Provide valuable information: on where persons tation processes and decision-making bodies,
with disabilities are located; on their situation; including camp governance. Invite them to • National Network (ADA), A Planning Guide
• Foster mutual understanding and knowledge. on barriers that prevent them from accessing use their knowledge of disability to develop for Making Temporary Events Accessible to
humanitarian assistance; on threats to them specific risk and mitigation strategies for People with Disabilities
• Build capacity and promote cross-learning and violations of their rights, etc. persons with disabilities.
between OPDs and humanitarian actors. • National Network (ADA), Accessible Events:
• Provide technical support on disability to • Identify qualified individuals who have a range Planning and Preparation Are Key
• Ensure continuity of action, because OPDs humanitarian organizations, for instance by of disabilities and are of different ages and
remain after a crisis or disaster ends. raising awareness, identifying and remov- gender and recruit them as staff members
ing barriers, facilitating access to resources, and volunteers.
• Strengthen and unify the population around building capacity for inclusive humanitarian
shared needs and issues. action, protecting and advancing rights, or • Set up and encourage the formation of formal
minimizing the disproportionate impact of and informal groups (such as peer-support
• Improve advocacy for protection of displaced crises on persons with disabilities. groups of persons with disabilities and their
persons with disabilities. families) and build the capacity of these
• Encourage government officials and human- groups to represent their constituencies
Not all OPDs have a mission that aligns with human- itarian stakeholders to learn about disabil- in management and coordination of the
itarian action. In many cases, OPDs will not have ity, change and review policies, reform legal response. They can contribute, for example,
engaged with the humanitarian sector and the frameworks, or adopt tools and processes to identifying barriers, meeting needs and
humanitarian programme cycle, or its coordination that strengthen the protection and assistance reducing protection risks, and more gener-
mechanisms, response and recovery programmes, available to persons with disabilities during ally by making sure that persons with disabil-
and funding procedures. Often, they have had few crises. ities have a voice.
opportunities to partner and collaborate with human-
itarian organizations. It is therefore important to • Provide targeted services to persons with • Where the persons of concern are refugees,
manage expectations. disabilities, often through a peer-support coordinate with host country OPDs. If feasi-
model. ble, invite them to mobilize persons with
While humanitarian stakeholders may want to disabilities in camps and in host communi-
develop partnerships with OPDs, their ability to do so ties. Encourage and support OPDs to include
is frequently limited by their limited knowledge of the Partnerships when no OPDs adequately refugees and other displaced persons in their
disability movement, prejudices about persons with represent an affected population networks.
disabilities, and the perception that disability should
be addressed by disability-focused organizations. In many humanitarian contexts, no local OPDs may
exist; where they do exist, they may have been weak-
The role of OPDs in a partnership or collaboration ened by the crisis or have limited capacity or may not
with humanitarian stakeholders will depend on their adequately represent all persons with disabilities in a
pre-crisis capacities, their mandate, and their ability population. Where a population has been displaced,
to represent all persons with disabilities or a specific for example, members of OPDs may be scattered in
group of persons with disabilities. When OPDs are various locations. They may have difficulty contact-
not present, or existing OPDs do not have adequate ing one another or organizing themselves to respond
capacity, humanitarian actors should establish to the crisis or support the humanitarian response.
contact with regional or global OPD networks.
Whether or not OPDs can be located and engaged, a
OPDs can fulfil many roles and functions. The list humanitarian response must include persons with
below is not exhaustive but may be a useful starting disabilities and must address their priorities and
point when humanitarian actors approach OPDs to requirements. To do so when no local OPDs exist
discuss cooperation. OPDs may: or when no OPDs can fully represent a displaced
population, the following strategies can be adopted:

34 35
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

7 A NNEXES

6 Cross-cutting
considerations

6. Cross-cutting considerations

Age, gender and diversity64 capacity of affected persons with disabilities to


access and participate in humanitarian assistance
Real or perceived differences in personal charac- and protection. To avoid discrimination and injustice,
teristics significantly influence our experiences, it is essential to reach all segments of affected popu-
opportunities, capacities, needs and vulnerabilities. lations, not just those who are more visible.
Conflict and displacement frequently exacerbate
inequality and deepen marginalization or exclusion, These guidelines consider persons with disabilities
because they increase insecurity, damage social in terms of their age, gender, psychosocial status
support structures, reduce income generating oppor- and background.
tunities, and change social and physical environ-
ments (among other shocks).
Age
Age, gender, disability and other forms of diversity are
universally present in societies. It is vital to consider Age refers to socially and contextually defined
them, and the way they intersect, during all phases of stages in a person’s life cycle. A person’s capaci-
the humanitarian programme cycle in order to ensure ties and requirements change as they age. Age can
that all affected persons, including those with disabil- enhance or diminish a person’s capacity to exercise
ities, can assert their human rights and participate their rights. In order to develop responses that are
fully in the humanitarian response. Equally, to meet appropriate for different age groups (children, young
their duty of accountability to affected populations, adults, mature adults, older persons with disabili-
humanitarian actors must recognize that the inter- ties), humanitarian actors must consider the differ-
section of age, gender, disability and other forms of ent needs, barriers and threats that persons with
diversity impacts the resilience, protection and safety disabilities face at different points in their life cycle.
of members of affected populations differently. To
illustrate, older women with disabilities may be at risk
of gender-based violence due to age-related discrim- Gender
ination, gender norms and barriers related to disabil-
ity; adolescent girls with disabilities may be excluded Gender refers to socially constructed differences
from decision-making because of discrimination on between females, males, and others, and the rela-
the basis of disability and gender norms; boys with tionships between and among them, throughout
disabilities may be at risk of recruitment by armed the life cycle. These differences are context- and
groups, because of their age and disability. time-specific and change over time within and
across cultures. Gender, together with age, sexual
To mitigate the impact of humanitarian crises, it orientation and gender identity, determines roles,
is important to understand how crises reduce the responsibilities, power and access to resources.

64 
Adapted from UNHCR, Emergency Handbook.

37
6. Cross-cutting considerations Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

H EALTH
Outcomes are also affected by other diversity 1. 
Prioritize safety and dignity and avoid caus- Key actions
factors, such as disability, social class, race, caste, ing harm. Prevent and minimize as much as
ethnic or religious background, economic wealth, possible any unintended negative effects • Consult persons with disabilities to ensure that decisions take account of their preferences and do not
marital status, migrant status, displacement, and of your intervention which can increase negatively impact their lives. (See Informed consent.)
urban or rural location.65 To ensure that all affected people’s vulnerability to both physical and
persons with disabilities have safe and equal access psychosocial risks.
• Avoid strategies and actions that perpetuate stigma related to disability. For instance, rehabilitation is
important in a response but does not address the whole experience of the person and must be supple-
to humanitarian assistance and protection, therefore,
mentary to actions that persons with disabilities prioritize.
humanitarian actors must design programmes that 2. 
Meaningful access. Arrange for people’s
take into account the range of gender identities and access to assistance and services in propor-
sexual orientations of persons with disabilities in the tion to need and without any barriers (e.g.,
communities they serve. discrimination). Pay special attention
Prioritize safety and dignity and avoid causing harm
to individuals and groups who may face
heightened protection risks or barriers to
Diversity accessing assistance and services. Doing nothing inadvertently causes harm Doing wrong causes harm

Diversity refers to differences in values, attitudes, 3. 


Accountability. Create appropriate mecha-
Setting up programmes or projects (such as food Acting without the free and informed consent
cultural perspectives, beliefs, ethnic background, nisms through which affected populations
distributions or water points) without consider- of the person concerned can have irreparable
nationality, sexual orientation, gender identity, health, can measure the adequacy of interventions
ing whether persons with disabilities are able to effects on their health.
social status, impairments, and other specific and address concerns and complaints.
access the locations chosen.
personal characteristics. While age and gender
dimensions are present in everyone, other charac- 4. 
Participation and empowerment. Support
teristics vary from person to person. If they are to the development of self-protection capac-
Failing to provide information about programme Acting without consulting beneficiaries, including
protect and assist all affected people, including ities and assist people to claim their rights,
or project entitlements in multiple accessible persons with disabilities, may lead humanitarian
persons with disabilities, and encourage their partic- including – but not exclusively – the rights
formats and in a language that everyone can actors to set incorrect priorities and plan poorly,
ipation, humanitarian actors must recognize, under- to shelter, food, water and sanitation, health
understand. putting beneficiaries at greater risk of harm.
stand and value these differences. and education.

Cross-cutting programming Prioritize safety and dignity and avoid


causing harm Mental health and psychosocial support intervention pyramid for mental health and psycho-
Protection mainstreaming66 social support in emergencies):70
The first principle above (to prioritize safety and Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS)
Given the multifaceted nature of protection threats dignity and avoid causing harm68) must be inclusive refers to any type of support that aims to protect 1. Actions that restore a sense of dignity and
and the complex contexts in which they arise, the of harm to persons with disabilities. It should not be or promote psychosocial well-being or prevent or safety in emergency-affected populations,
many organizations and authorities that deliver a used to deny aid, promote discriminatory actions, or manage mental health conditions.69 During human- while promoting equal access to basic
humanitarian response must coordinate and work create barriers to aid for persons with disabilities. itarian crises, many factors (violence, uncertainty, services, are of paramount importance
in ways that are complementary and collabora- Organizations that act without consulting persons loss of family members, loss of home…) can nega- for their mental health and psychosocial
tive. Putting protection at the centre of humanitar- with disabilities may set priorities incorrectly and tively affect the mental health and psychosocial well-being. (Level 1.)
ian action requires a system-wide commitment.67 plan badly, putting persons with disabilities at greater well-being of individuals, families and communities;
Humanitarian actors need to mainstream protection risk of harm. Failure or refusal to act, to avoid caus- persons with disabilities are often disproportionately 2. Other important interventions strengthen
in their programmes, taking age, gender, disability ing harm, can inadvertently cause harm. affected. By integrating MHPSS into programming, social cohesion and support the community
and diversity into consideration, following the four humanitarian actors can improve the mental health and families. (Level 2.)
key elements of protection mainstreaming: and psychosocial well-being of all affected people,
including those with physical, sensory, psychoso- 3. Individual, family and group interven-
cial or intellectual disabilities. MHPSS responses in tions that provide emotional and practical
emergency settings include various levels of support, support further contribute to mental health
coordinated across different sectors, in a multi-lay- and psychosocial well-being.
65 
Adapted from IASC, Gender Handbook for Humanitarian Action (2017), p. 385. ered and complementary model (illustrated by the
66 
See Global Protection Cluster, Protection Mainstreaming.
67 
IASC, IASC Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016). 69 
IASC, Guidelines for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings (2007).
68 
See Global Protection Cluster, Protection Mainstreaming Training Package (2014). 70 
Ibid.

38 39
6. Cross-cutting considerations Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

These interventions can be delivered by non-spe-


cialized workers and peer supporters in health,
education or community services. (Level 3.)

4. When necessary, specialists provide


specific MHPSS interventions (which may
be psychological or pharmacological).
(Level 4.)

MHPSS interventions are based on a human rights


framework and promote and protect the rights of
persons with disabilities. Multi-layered MHPSS
services and support benefit all affected persons,
including persons with disabilities, who face signif-
icant psychosocial stressors.

40 41
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Accountability to affected

7
people and protection from
sexual exploitation and
abuse
7. Accountability to affected people and protection from sexual exploitation and abuse

Accountability to affected populations (AAP)71 is ian programme cycle, ensuring that persons with
understood to be a mutual responsibility of aid disabilities participate in decision-making processes,
providers and other stakeholders (donors, govern- and communicating information to them in multiple
ments) who have committed to use their power and accessible formats.
resources ethically and responsibly to ‘put people at
the centre’ of humanitarian actions. Humanitarian Annex 7 discusses how humanitarian actors, includ-
actors have a duty to make sure assistance gener- ing clusters, can help to achieve the commitments
ates the best possible outcomes for all groups who and quality criteria set out in the Core Humanitarian
are affected by a crisis, including those who may be Standards (CHS) by working in practical ways to
less visible, such as persons with disabilities. They include persons with disabilities.
have undertaken to achieve this by consistently
applying technical and quality standards; coordi-
nating their actions to maximize coverage and mini- IASC Commitments on Accountability to
mize risks, gaps and duplication; listening to and Affected People
engaging with affected people; and acting on their
feedback. In 2017, the IASC Principals endorsed a revised
version of the AAP, titled Commitments on Account-
AAP focuses on the rights, dignity and protection ability to Affected People and Protection from Sexual
of an affected community in its entirety. It requires Exploitation and Abuse (CAAP and PSEA). The
humanitarian actors to identify and address the revision took account of new guidance on human-
needs and vulnerabilities of members of affected itarian policy, including the Core Humanitarian Stan-
communities; it equally requires them to recognize dards and the outcomes of the World Humanitarian
and harness the capacities, knowledge and aspira- Summit and the Grand Bargain.72
tions of those communities.
The revised CAAP places a strong emphasis on
To effectively ensure that accountability is extended collective accountability. Humanitarian actors are
to all affected people, including persons with disabil- expected to act singly and together to enhance and
ities, mechanisms for accountability must be acces- integrate AAP in their responses. Their role is central.
sible to persons with disabilities, and must consider Annex 7 explains how to ensure inclusion of persons
their requirements. This duty includes a duty to focus with disabilities with respect to the four commit-
on disability inclusion throughout the humanitar- ments.

For the most recent statement of this policy, see IASC, Commitments on Accountability to Affected People and Protection from Sexual Exploitation
71 

and Abuse (CAAP and PSEA) (2017). For the original policy statement, see IASC, The IASC Task Team on Accountability to Affected Populations and
Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (AAP/PSEA).
72 
See IASC’s website on the Grand Bargain.

43
7. Accountability to affected people and protection from sexual exploitation and abuse Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Diagram 4 | Accountability to affected populations (AAP)73 Implementation and monitoring Protection from sexual exploitation 
and abuse
Giving communities the
• Contact, employ and train persons with
Taking opportunity to assess and disabilities who can participate in implemen- Engagement of the local population is core to AAP;

account if appropriate sanction your


actions
tation. it is also where most of the work on protection from
sexual exploitation and abuse is done. Work to
• Develop relevant technical, quality and suppress sexual exploitation74 and abuse75 in human-
accountability indicators for monitoring itarian contexts focuses on acts by humanitarian
purposes. workers that harm affected people.

• Develop feedback and complaint mecha- Sexual exploitation and abuse are among the
nisms that include persons with disabilities most serious breaches of accountability. In 2015,
and are accessible to them. the IASC Principals made a formal statement of
Giving account commitment to prevent and respond to sexual
• Regularly monitor the degree to which exploitation and abuse by humanitarian workers.
Giving communities persons with disabilities, as a subgroup of Persons with disabilities, especially women and
influence over decision the affected population, are satisfied by the girls, are in greater need of protection due to power
making in a way that
accounts for their diver- quality and effectiveness of the humanitarian imbalances.
Being held sity, and allows the views response.
to account of the most at-risk to
be equally considered
It is essential to raise the awareness of persons
with disabilities and their communities. They should
Transparently and
Monitoring and reporting know their rights and entitlements, and should
effectively sharing have access to effective, confidential mechanisms
information with com-
munities
• Identify the most appropriate technical stan- through which they can report complaints and share
dards and good practices, adapting them to information regarding their assistance and protec-
the crisis context. Choose approaches that tion. When responses implement PSEA policies,
ensure the inclusion of all persons and groups they should adopt a comprehensive approach that
with disabilities. includes prevention, response, coordination and
Summary of key elements: accountability • Highlight the views, priorities and preferences management.
to affected people and protection from of affected people and ensure that persons • Monitor and promote consistent use of
sexual exploitation and abuse with disabilities are an integral subgroup in agreed quality and technical standards.
all needs analysis. Tools and resources
Needs assessment and analysis • Collect, analyse and respond to monitoring
At the same time, use needs assessments to data, including feedback from persons with • IASC, Commitments on Accountability to
Needs assessment and analysis underpin the ability determine: disabilities. Affected People and Protection from Sexual
of a humanitarian response to scale up while retain- Exploitation and Abuse (2015)
ing excellence and ensuring that AAP remains fully • The assistance delivery arrangements that • Ensure that persons with disabilities partici-
integrated. Minimum recommended actions are to: persons with disabilities prefer (locations, pate in monitoring the response. • The Task Force on Protection from Sexual
times, etc.). Exploitation and Abuse by our own staff
• Ensure that persons with disabilities are • Based on feedback, make course corrections
involved in needs assessments. • The communication channels that persons and adjustments to intervention strategies • USAID, Social and Behaviour Change Interven-
with disabilities prefer (face-to-face, radio, and plans. tions
• Systematically include at least five qualitative SMS, other).
questions in all assessment tools.
• Other contextual factors that could influence
• Disaggregate data by sex, age and disability intervention strategies (including gender,
when analysing protection risks or barriers access, protection, cultural and economic
to access. factors, etc.).
74 
 exual exploitation refers to “abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power or trust for sexual purposes”. See UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin
S
Special measures for protection from sexual exploitation and sexual abuse (PSEA) (ST/SGB/2003/13).
73 
Adapted from IASC, Accountability to Affected Populations (AAP): A brief overview. 75 
Sexual abuse refers to “actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature”. Ibid.

44 45
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

8 Humanitarian
response options76

8. Humanitarian response options76

Humanitarian assistance usually involves the analy- Cash-based interventions/cash and


sis and adoption of several response options, includ- voucher assistance
ing but not limited to:
Research shows that, where markets operate, cash-
• In-kind provision of goods. based interventions have the potential to efficiently
reach people in need faster and at lower cost than
• Cash and voucher assistance. other forms of emergency assistance. This empow-
ers people to make choices about assistance or
• Direct service provision. services, in accordance with principles affirmed in
the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabil-
• Technical assistance. ities (CRPD), and simultaneously sustains the local
economy. Humanitarian actors now invest in cash-
• Capacity-building. based interventions on a larger scale and more
consistently, reflecting a commitment set out in the
• Logistics and supply chain management. Grand Bargain, an agreement involving more than 30
of the biggest donors and aid providers.
The specific combination of response options chosen
usually evolves over time. To determine how human- Cash-based intervention is one modality of assis-
itarian assistance can best be delivered to persons tance and has been used for many years in disabil-
with disabilities, it is essential to consult persons with ity-inclusive social protection and safety net
disabilities and those who represent them. programming in development settings. Humanitarian
actors can draw on this experience when they pilot
This chapter focuses on cash and voucher assis- and scale up cash-based support in emergencies.77
tance, recognizing that this option is being used
increasingly. Readers should note, however, that it is However, cash is only one modality. It can comple-
not a stand-alone section. Its guidance applies to all ment or be complemented by in-kind delivery of assis-
sectors and should be read alongside other chapters. tance at distribution points or at household level.78
There is still a large evidence gap and an incomplete
understanding of the role that cash-based interven-
tions may play in the protection and empowerment

76 
This chapter is adapted from the Sphere Handbook (2018).
UNICEF and the Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development in Nepal provide an example. They organized an extensive social assistance
77 

system in response to the earthquake in 2015. See Cash Learning Partnership (CaLP), The State of the World’s Cash Report – Cash Transfer
Programming in Humanitarian Aid (2018), p. 114.
78 
See the sectoral sections for information on the relevance of in-kind distribution.

47
8. Humanitarian response options Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

of persons with disabilities in humanitarian contexts, • Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, • Develop partnerships with OPDs and orga- Empowerment and capacity development
or the risks that persons with disabilities may face Humanitarian inclusion standards for older nizations that deliver cash-based inter-
when they access cash in these settings.79 people and people with disabilities (2018) ventions; partnerships can both support • Before any intervention, assess cash inter-
persons with disabilities to use cash-based vention policies and processes; the capac-
programmes and advocate for and promote ity of organizations that provide cash-based
Key legal instruments and other Key elements – must do inclusive services and assistance. interventions; and the capacity of staff to
frameworks design and implement cash interventions that
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases include persons with disabilities.
• Convention on the Rights of Persons with of humanitarian action when implementing inclusive Addressing barriers
Disabilities. Articles 11, 12, 27 and 28 specif-
ically mention humanitarian action and raise
cash-based programming for persons with disabilities. • Provide support and training to persons with
points of relevance to access to financial
• Address staff attitudes that stigmatize disabilities to enable them to access cash-
persons with disabilities (that suggest, for based assistance and use cash distribution
assistance. Participation example, that persons with disabilities do not systems (such as banks). Provide basic liter-
have the capacity to access and manage cash, acy and financial literacy courses when tech-
• Grand Bargain
• Ensure that persons with disabilities are or participate in cash-for-work, livelihood nology that will be used is unfamiliar.
• Cash Learning Partnership, Global Frame- fairly represented in both formal and infor- activities or skills development programmes).
work for Action, a consolidated summary of mal mechanisms and processes. Consider
commitments for cash transfer programming a range of disabilities, as well as age, gender • Consider the different access requirements Data collection and monitoring
and diversity. Seek specifically to promote of persons with disabilities. Consider those
the participation of groups with disabilities who live in rural and in urban areas; differ- • Monitor whether persons with disabilities
that are underrepresented, including persons ences in financial and technological access have equal access to cash and vouchers in
Key terms 80
with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities, and literacy; and physical and information their households and can spend them.
indigenous persons, women and girls. barriers (for example, the distance to distri-
The terms cash-based transfer, cash-based inter- bution points, the availability and cost of • Monitor whether persons with disabilities are
vention, cash transfer programming, cash-based • Consult persons with different disabilities, accessible transport). exposed to exploitation and abuse in the context
assistance, cash relief and cash voucher assistance and of different ages and genders, about how of cash transfer programmes, or face barriers
are used interchangeably to refer to all programmes they access cash, how they prefer to access • Assess how accessible different cash delivery when they seek to access or spend cash.
(for shelter, food, health, etc.) that issue cash cash, how they access markets and services, mechanisms are (cash, cash cards, mobile
or vouchers to beneficiaries to enable them to and which needs they usually meet using phone credit, etc.). • Collect evidence and share lessons learned
purchase goods or services directly. In humanitar- markets. Ensure that costs associated with on what works. What practices increase the
ian contexts, cash or vouchers may be issued to indi- enabling participation are included in budgets. • Remember that some forms of cash transfer inclusion of persons with disabilities in cash-
viduals, households or community recipients. Such (such as restricted cash) may reduce access based interventions?
programmes do not include microfinance activities • Ensure that persons with disabilities, their to assistive devices, which are often classi-
or financial support during humanitarian interven- families, and organizations of persons with fied as health-related expenses.
tions to governments or other state actors. disabilities (OPDs), are actively involved in
identifying barriers, and planning, designing,
implementing, monitoring and evaluating
Standards and guidelines cash-based interventions. Consider protec-
tion risks, mitigation mechanisms, and bene-
• Cash Learning Partnership fits at every stage.

• Cash-Based Assistance Quality Toolbox • Identify the preferences of beneficiaries with


disabilities with regard to the value, frequency
• Minimum Standard for Market Analysis and duration of cash transfers.

79 
 ash Learning Partnership, As the movement for cash transfer programming advances, how can we ensure that people with disabilities are not
C
left behind in cash transfer programming for emergencies? (2015); UNHCR and WFP, Mitigating risks of abuse of power in cash assistance in the
Democratic Republic of Congo (2018).
80 
For more on terms, see Cash Learning Partnership, Glossary of Terminology for Cash and Voucher Assistance (2017).

48 49
8. Humanitarian response options Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Diagram 5 | Barriers to access and inclusion in cash-based interventions The guidance below will help humanitarian actors to may face in accessing humanitarian cash-based
identify and address the barriers that persons with transfer programmes.
disabilities (and also those who give them support)
HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS
WITH DISABILITIES IN CASH-BASED INTERVENTIONS

IMPACT OF CRISIS
Breakdown of local economies, insecurity, breakdown of social networks, MAINSTREAMED TARGETED

destruction of infrastructure, displacement, closure of services Design cash-based intervention programmes that Provide financial literacy training for persons
are inclusive of everyone, including persons with with disabilities who have been excluded from
disabilities, and have accessible infrastructure and education.
communication arrangements.

!         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
Recommended actions

Environmental barriers: Preparedness Response Recovery

• Lack of accessible information on cash registration processes and delivery 1. Assessment, analysis and planning
mechanisms
• Lack of accessible technology for money transfers through mobile phones or ATM Train staff to identify barriers and protection risks, related to cash-based
X
cards interventions, that persons with disabilities face.
• Inaccessible voucher distribution points Map existing social protection programmes and assess the accessibility of
• Inaccessible participating shops or markets that accept vouchers administrative procedures and processes. Assess whether they will cope
• Lack of accessible transportation X
if humanitarian programming is scaled up. Modify programme objectives
accordingly and plan measures to address administrative barriers.
Attitudinal barriers:
Identify potential barriers to inclusion of persons with disabilities in
• Attitudes and knowledge of staff towards persons with disabilities X X X
cash-based interventions (for example, physically inaccessible markets).
Institutional barriers: Map partners that are already working with persons with disabilities;
• Lack of technical capacity to develop disability-sensitive scoring systems establish new partnerships and work with OPDs, as well as leaders with
X
for targeting assistance disabilities, to identify and remove barriers and risks that persons with
• Lack of consideration of persons with disabilities in sector standards, disabilities face.
guidelines and policies
• Complex and inaccessible administration and registration procedures Assess the degree to which markets are physically accessible to persons
with disabilities, and the ease with which persons with disabilities can X X X
obtain market information.
Analyse market systems and services that might help to protect persons
with disabilities. Consider alternative care, health, assistive devices, legal
X X
services, accessible transport, and education. Assess how persons with
disabilities currently access these services and the barriers they face.
Consider the costs and risks persons with disabilities may face if they
X X
Risks faced by persons with disabilities have to rely on intermediaries to pick up and deliver goods.

Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health, Assess how cash can be used to remove barriers and strengthen the
X X X
exclusion, isolation, abandonment resilience of households that include persons with disabilities.

50 51
8. Humanitarian response options Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Plan how market actors can be helped to make their markets and services 4. Coordination
more accessible to persons with disabilities (for instance by improving X
Involve OPDs in protection and cash coordination efforts, for example
physical or communications accessibility).81 X X X
in the Protection Cluster and Cash Working Group.
Assess the degree to which financial and technology solutions are acces-
X X Link up with national programmes and systems that offer cash transfers
sible to persons with disabilities. X
to persons with disabilities.
Consider other disability-related costs, including additional costs that
Coordinate with other sectors to ensure that cash-based interventions
households including persons with disabilities may incur when they X X
facilitate access for persons with disabilities to other humanitarian X X X
access cash (transport costs, assistive devices, etc.).
services (such as child-friendly spaces or education).
Provide clear information, in accessible formats and in plain language,
5. Monitoring and evaluation
on the delivery of cash-based interventions, their duration, and alterna- X X X
tive programmes that are available. Regularly collect feedback from persons with a range of disabilities, and
of different age and gender, on the barriers and risks they face when they X X
Ensure that financial institutions are prepared to make cash interventions
access cash transfers.
accessible to persons with disabilities. Ensure they are willing to undergo X
vulnerability assessments. During post-distribution monitoring, consult persons with different
disabilities to identify the barriers they face when they access benefi- X
2. Resource mobilization
ciary registration systems.
Assess whether social protection programmes for persons with disabil-
X X Conduct accessibility audits of service delivery mechanisms and feed-
ities can be delivery mechanisms. X
back and complaint mechanisms.
3. Implementation
Conduct accessibility audits of markets and propose modifications that
X
Ensure that all affected people have equal opportunities to access cash- will make them more accessible.
for-work programmes and are paid the same for work of equal value. Do
X Disaggregate individual data by sex, age and disability at a minimum,
not channel persons with disabilities into lower paid or less desirable
using tools tested in humanitarian contexts, such as the Washington X
work on grounds of disability.
Group Short Set of Disability Questions.
Ensure that the environments and working conditions of cash-for-work
Adopt accessible methods and procedures for enabling persons with
and food-for-work programmes are accessible to persons with disabil- X X
disabilities to consent to use of their data. Make sure they know with
ities. X
whom their data is being shared (for example, other humanitarian orga-
Choose distribution sites that are safe and accessible to persons with nizations, the government, etc.).
X X
disabilities.
Consider setting up ‘market fairs’ or itinerant markets in areas that are
remote or difficult to access, so that persons with disabilities who live X
in those areas can participate.
Tools and resources • Cash Learning Partnership, Safer Cash
Research and Toolkit
Assess whether naming a person with a disability as the registered bene-
X • Cash Learning Partnership
ficiary might place that person at risk. • UNHCR, Guide for Protection in Cash-Based
Clearly communicate assistance objectives. In doing so, seek to mitigate • CBM, CBM Humanitarian Hands-on Tool82 Interventions
stigma, myths or envy that persons with disabilities who receive benefits X X X
may be subject to. • Cash Learning Partnership, Cash-Based Assis- • Women’s Refugee Commission and Mercy
tance: Programme Quality Toolbox Corps, Mainstreaming GBV Considerations in
Consider alternative delivery mechanisms, such as outreach programmes CBIs and Utilizing Cash in GBV Response: Tool-
or home delivery, that allow persons with disabilities to collect assis- X X X • Convention on the Elimination of All Forms kit for Optimizing Cash-based Interventions for
tance themselves. of Discrimination Against Women, Articles 11 Protection from Gender-based Violence
and 14
• Women’s Refugee Commission, Cohort Live-
lihoods and Risk Analysis

81 
See Cash Learning Partnership with Catholic Relief Services, Market Support Interventions in Humanitarian Contexts – a Tip Sheet (2018). 82 
A reference and learning app for humanitarian aid workers.

52 53
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

9 Stakeholder roles
and responsibilities
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities

The following tables outline the roles and responsibil- with disabilities as well as humanitarian stakeholders,
ities of different stakeholder groups throughout the and ensure they are included and can participate in
humanitarian programme cycle to support persons the humanitarian response.

Governments
• Ensure that contingency plans consider the needs of persons with disabilities,
and that plans are inclusive and accessible. For example, deliver training in
and promote awareness of relevant laws; establish accessible communication,
feedback and complaint mechanisms; and encourage the collection and use of
data using tools tested in humanitarian contexts, such as the Washington Group
Short Set of Disability Questions.
• Actively seek the participation of organizations of persons with disabilities
(OPDs) that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities. Involve them in
developing and reviewing disaster risk reduction policies, other humanitarian
Preparedness policies, laws, national plans, and other programmes and processes. Ensure
legal frameworks support inclusion and participation of persons with disabili-
ties in the humanitarian response.
• Ensure that national systems that provide services (rehabilitation, education,
health, peer support) are able to respond if large population movements occur.
Map disability resources at local level (sign language interpreters, inclusion
experts, service providers) and establish a roster.
• In consultation with OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities,
nominate a disability focal point to liaise with the Humanitarian Country Team
and inter-cluster coordination systems on behalf of government agencies.

• Give humanitarian actors access to population data on persons with disabili-


ties for all types of assessments (rapid needs assessments, Multi-Cluster Initial
Rapid Assessments, Post-Disaster Needs Assessments). Evaluate the quality of
Needs population data on persons with disabilities.
assessment and • Involve OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities, and disabil-
analysis ity service providers, in planning and implementing data collection activities;
collect, analyse and share information on barriers and enablers; promote use of
data collection tools tested in humanitarian contexts, such as the Washington
Group Short Set of Disability Questions. (See the section on Data and informa-
tion management.)

55
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Humanitarian leadership (Emergency/Resident Coordinator, Humanitarian 


Strategic • Involve OPDs in strategic response planning. Country Team)85
response • Take steps to ensure that strategic response planning includes persons with For this section refer to Guidance on strengthening disability inclusion in Humanitarian
planning disabilities and adopts a human rights-based approach that complies with
Response Plans.
national, regional and international legal instruments and frameworks.

• Mobilize national and international resources and budgets (OPDs, service


Resource providers, funds). Ensure the inclusion of persons with disabilities, including • Integrate disability inclusion in the Terms of Reference for Humanitarian Country
mobilization refugees and other displaced persons with disabilities; ensure they receive Teams (HCTs).
support and protection during all phases of the humanitarian programme cycle.
• Encourage the government to nominate a disability focal point for the HCT.
• With OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities, monitor the • Maintain oversight to ensure that all preparedness and contingency plans are
degree to which all persons with disabilities have access to assistance and inclusive of persons with disabilities: promote the IASC guidelines on inclu-
protection. Preparedness sion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action; ensure that OPDs and
• Ensure that assistance provided by the government and other humanitarian persons with disabilities participate in all relevant processes; provide capacity
Implementation actors is accessible to persons with disabilities. development on disability to the HCT.
and monitoring • Enable social protection schemes to act as response mechanisms. Establish • Ensure that preparedness and contingency plans are adequately resourced
and facilitate access to and use of social protection schemes as response
83 (in terms of funding and human resources) for accessibility and inclusion of
mechanisms. persons with disabilities in preparedness and contingency plans.

• Address abuses and violations of the human rights of persons with disabilities, • Ensure that needs assessment processes that estimate the severity of needs
including gender-based violence (GBV). consider the impact of the situation on persons with disabilities and their families.

• Commission real-time evaluations of the extent to which persons with disabili- • Ensure that multisectoral needs assessments consider the requirements, risks,
Needs
ties can access assistance and protection, with the objective of improving their skills, capacities, and views and perceptions of persons with disabilities.
assessment
inclusion.
and analysis • All data collected in the course of multisectoral needs assessments should be disag-
Evaluation • Ensure that all evaluations include a component that examines the equal access, gregated by sex, age and disability (using data collection tools tested in humanitar-
participation and protection of persons with disabilities. ian contexts, such as the Washington Group Short Set of Disability Questions).

• Ensure that persons with disabilities participate in sectoral and intersectoral • Include persons with disabilities and OPDs in needs assessment teams.
evaluations.
• Include disability in the strategic and results frameworks of response plans;
• Invite local OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities, and ensure that reporting reflects the diversity of persons with disabilities.
private and government providers of disability services, to coordinate with Strategic • Ensure that all strategic response plans (humanitarian response plans, rapid
Coordination humanitarian stakeholders and share information. response response plans, etc.) include all persons with disabilities who are in need.
• Systematically require relevant meeting agendas and reporting processes to planning • Describe in the plan how the response will address factors that help to heighten
update and report on disability. the risks faced by persons with disabilities.

• Share official information on persons with disabilities, including information on • Involve OPDs in developing the humanitarian response plan.
barriers, risks, available services and training.
Information • Encourage donors to allocate response funding for persons with disabilities
• Develop, implement and enforce legislation to strengthen accessible information and their inclusion in response actions.
management management systems during emergencies. The legal data protection framework
should address data collection, appropriate dissemination of information, and
• Define criteria on inclusion of persons with disabilities for flash appeals, emer-
Resource gency response funds, country-based pooled funds and other emergency fund-
access to information.84
mobilization ing mechanisms.
• Ensure that budget programmers are trained in disability inclusion. Ensure
that sufficient resources are allocated to improving accessibility and providing
reasonable accommodations.
83 
For example, simplify procedures for obtaining disability ID, for accessing the disbursement system, etc.
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situations
84 

of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2). 85 
See also United Nations, Disability Inclusion Strategy (2019), which sets out specific expectations for leaders of United Nations organizations.

56 57
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

• Systematically include inclusion and protection of persons with disabilities in Cluster and sector leads88
the agendas of HCT meetings.
For this section, refer to IASC policy on accountability to affected populations.89
Implementation • Ensure that monitoring tools address the concerns of persons with disabilities;
and monitoring include accessibility, risks and risk management, specific requirements, views • Involve national and local OPDs in clusters and sectors and seek their advice on
and perceptions. Ensure that persons with disabilities participate in monitoring, good practices and challenges.
needs assessments and the response more generally.
• Appoint a disability focal point in each cluster.
• Encourage all sectors and clusters to include disability inclusion (protection,
• Identify the safety and protection risks, and the disability-inclusive services that
safety and equal access) in their evaluations.
are available, in each sector. Assess the capacities of persons with disabilities
• Ensure that persons with disabilities participate in sectoral and intersectoral and ensure they are included in sector-specific contingency plans. Ensure contin-
Evaluation evaluations. Preparedness gency plans include prepositioning of assistive devices (such as wheelchairs,
crutches, white canes, hearing aids, peer-support systems) to replace those that
• Disseminate evaluation findings in multiple accessible formats. Ensure that
are likely to be lost or damaged.
all sectors use evaluation findings when they plan their programmes or make
adjustments to them. • Ensure contingency plans put clear communications systems in place, includ-
ing early warning systems, and inclusive feedback and response mechanisms.
• Ensure that disability focal points and/or OPDs are included in inter-cluster Communication arrangements should take account of the communications
meetings. requirements of persons with disabilities and should be accessible to them.
Coordination
• Promote disability mainstreaming across humanitarian action (tools, standards),
using these guidelines. • Ensure that needs assessment processes that estimate the severity of needs
consider the impact of the situation on persons with disabilities and their families.
• Obtain agreement, including with government, on system-wide arrangements for
collecting and sharing data on persons with disabilities in line with data ethics • Ensure that multisectoral needs assessments consider the requirements, risks,
and protection principles.87 skills, capacities, and views and perceptions of persons with disabilities.
Information Needs
• Systematically report on persons with disabilities; where no information is avail- • Ensure that needs assessments identify persons with disabilities and their require-
management86 assessment and ments. When primary data are collected, consider using tools tested in humanitar-
able, report ‘no information available’.
analysis ian contexts, such as the Washington Group Short Set of Disability Questions.
• Require that all collection, analysis and use of data is disaggregated by sex, age
and disability. • Consult affected populations, including persons with disabilities. Allocate
15–20 per cent of consultation time and resources to persons with disabilities.
• Ensure that joint needs assessments include OPDs representing the diversity of
persons with disabilities in their teams.

• Involve OPDs representing the diversity of persons with disabilities in strate-


gic response planning processes, including analysis of information relating to
persons with disabilities.
Strategic • Develop and use appropriate indicators to measure the inclusion of persons with
response disabilities, applying the recommendations of these guidelines.
planning • Design a twin-track approach and response strategy, including standard operating
procedures (SOP), based on sector-specific guidelines and standards on inclusion
of persons with disabilities. The approach and the strategy should take account of
the intersectionality of gender, age, disability and other diversity factors.

86 
Information management refers to collection, analysis and management of data and information across the humanitarian programme cycle. 88 
See also United Nations, Disability Inclusion Strategy (2019), which sets out specific expectations for leaders of United Nations organizations.
 ee ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situations
87 
S IASC Task Team on AAP, Global protection cluster and OCHA, Suggested Actions for cluster coordination groups to strengthen Accountability to
89 

of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2). Affected Populations and Protection in the Humanitarian Programme Cycle (2016).

58 59
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Programmers (in humanitarian and development organizations)92,93


• Ensure that sectoral budgets and the funding needs overview allocate adequate
sums to disability-inclusive programming. Include universal design of new or
temporary structures, modification of existing structures, providing reasonable
• Consult, include and partner with disability focal points, persons with disabili-
ties, and OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities, during
accommodations, outreach mechanisms, sign language interpreters, etc.). Seek
all stages of disaster risk reduction and emergency preparedness programmes.
Resource advice from OPDs and disability focal points when budgets are planned and
mobilization prepared. • Organize awareness-raising and capacity development on inclusion of persons
Preparedness
with disabilities for staff and partners, in partnership with OPDs.
• Involve OPDs representing the diversity of persons with disabilities in the review
committee of selected projects (for example, emergency response funds and • Support OPDs to build and strengthen their capacity to work in humanitarian
pooled funds) to ensure that proposals adequately and appropriately include and action at all levels: administrative, human resources, accountability, financial
address the requirements of persons with disabilities. management, proposal writing.

• Monitor and report on the degree to which persons with disabilities are able to • Analyse the factors that contribute to risks that persons with disabilities in
access assistance and protection; disaggregate information by sex, age and affected populations face. With respect to needs assessment, identify barriers
Implementation disability. that prevent persons with disabilities from accessing assistance and protection,
Needs and enablers that facilitate access to assistance and protection.
and monitoring • Ensure that persons with disabilities are included in cluster reporting.
• In partnership with OPDs, develop and disseminate advocacy messages on the assessment and • Make needs assessment processes accessible to persons with disabilities. Offer
analysis reasonable accommodations where needed to simplify and facilitate collection
rights and protection of persons with disabilities who are affected by the crisis.
of information from and by persons with disabilities.

• Organize sector evaluations, and participate in intersectoral evaluations, that • Ensure that persons with a range of disabilities participate as key informants in
focus groups and needs assessment teams.
examine inclusion of persons with disabilities.
Evaluation
• Systematically include disability focal points, disability task teams, and OPDs that
represent the diversity of persons with disabilities, in evaluation processes.
• Make sure that meeting the requirements of persons with disabilities is among
the objectives of the humanitarian response plan. Design and include indicators
that measure the inclusion of persons with disabilities.
• Ensure that sectors and clusters harmonize the work they do on disability-inclu- Strategic
sive programming, in and across clusters and sectors.
• Adopt a twin-track plan to implement projects and strategies that ensure that
response persons with disabilities enjoy equitable access to assistance and protection.
• Encourage OPDs, disability-related organizations and service providers to partic- planning For this purpose, consider outreach, home-based services, accessible infra-
Coordination ipate in cluster meetings. Make sure that meetings are in accessible locations; structures, reasonable accommodations, etc.
provide reasonable accommodations when needed.
• Liaise and develop partnerships with disability-focused organizations, service
• Coordinate the development of an inclusive inter-cluster system, for referrals and providers, and OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities.
to monitor accessibility for persons with disabilities.

• Build an inclusive budget that recognizes the importance of accessibility and


• Ensure information management systems include information on the degree to reasonable accommodations. Involve OPDs and disability focal points in setting
which persons with disabilities can access assistance and protection and partic- priorities and determining the resources that will be needed to remove barriers
ipate in activities that are relevant to them. Resource that persons with disabilities face when they try to obtain assistance and protec-
Information mobilization tion.
• Make certain that information collected on persons with disabilities is reliable,
management90 updated, and identifies good practices with respect to protection of, assistance • Hire persons with disabilities and persons skilled in disability issues as staff or
to, and participation by persons with disabilities. Share information in cluster consultants.
reports that use accessible formats. Adhere to data ethics and protection prin-
ciples.91

90 
Information management refers to collection, analysis and management of data and information across the humanitarian programme cycle.
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situations
91  92 
Some actions in this section will also be relevant for analysis and information management officers.
of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2). 93 
See also United Nations, Disability Inclusion Strategy (2019), which sets out specific expectations for leaders of United Nations organizations.

60 61
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Donors
• Ensure that activity monitoring uses disability-inclusive indicators, disaggre-
gated by sex, age and disability.
• Include criteria and policies related to disability inclusion in calls, proposals and
Implementation • Systematically review and analyse the degree to which persons of concern can contract agreements.
access programmes and take corrective measures when required.
and monitoring • Ensure that staff are trained in inclusion of persons with disabilities and that
• Report on the barriers and risks that persons with disabilities face when they a dedicated disability focal point is appointed. Prepare disability guidance for
try to access humanitarian assistance and protection. Share good practices; implementing partners using these guidelines.
disseminate and apply standards94 and tools. Preparedness • Invest in preparedness and provide funding to support capacity development
designed to ensure that all humanitarian stakeholders, including OPDs, are
• Seek advice from OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities equipped and prepared to include persons with disabilities in humanitarian action.
when designing, planning and implementing evaluations that include questions
related to disability (protection, safety and equal access).
• Stipulate that reporting must include data collection on persons with disabilities,
including on accessibility, the removal of barriers, and quality of services. Insist
Evaluation • Ensure that persons with disabilities have access to evaluation processes and that data must be disaggregated by sex, age and disability.
can actively participate in them.
• Disseminate evaluation reports in a range of accessible formats. Use their find- Needs • Support implementing partners to facilitate needs assessments and analyses
ings to adjust programming as needed. assessment and that include persons with disabilities. These should address risks faced, access
analysis to protection and assistance, quality of services, and barriers.
• Involve OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with disabilities in coordi-
nation mechanisms. • Require implementing partners to design and include strategies on disability
Strategic
Coordination inclusion as part of funding requirements.
• Promote inter-cluster collaboration on disability inclusion. Establish referral response
pathways; promote cross-learning activities; offer training by sectoral experts planning • Promote and assist partners to develop approaches that identify, analyse and
and OPDs. address the risks that persons with disabilities face.

• Ensure that data related to disability measure and report on outcomes, outputs • Make inclusion of persons with disabilities a funding priority and allocate fund-
and indicators defined in humanitarian response plans. ing targets to promote their access and participation.

• Train staff to collect and analyse disability-related data, including on barriers to • Use a disability marker along with other relevant markers, such as the gender
inclusion and factors that enable inclusion. and age marker, to assist selection and monitoring of proposals.
Information Resource
• Create or adapt tools to capture information that report the degree to which mobilization • Create incentives for disability-inclusive programming in line with global partic-
management95 ipation commitments.
persons with disabilities can access assistance and protection programmes
and participate in response activities that are relevant to them. • Ensure funding appeals are accessible to OPDs that represent the diversity of
• Ensure that the collection, storage and processing of sensitive personal data is persons with disabilities. Adapt funding criteria, where required, to make local
carried out in line with appropriate data ethics and protection principles.96 OPDs eligible.

• Consult persons with disabilities when evaluating partners’ programmes;


discuss their access to assistance and protection.
Implementation • Assess reports, or monitor implementing partners’ performance, using criteria
and monitoring drawn from the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
Provide feedback and recommendations to partners.
• Monitor partners’ efforts to include persons with disabilities.

94 
Such as the Sphere Standards, the Humanitarian Inclusion Standards, and the Humanitarian Hands-on Tool App.
95 
Information management refers to collection, analysis and management of data and information across the humanitarian programme cycle.
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situations
96 

of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

62 63
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Organizations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs)


• Require partners to make the inclusion and participation of persons with disabil-
ities a systematic component of evaluations.
Humanitarian actors should include OPDs repre- persons with disabilities are fully included and fully
• Disseminate the results of evaluations in multiple accessible formats. senting the diversity of persons with disabilities in participate in humanitarian action. When no OPDs
Evaluation all phases of the humanitarian programme cycle. are locally present, humanitarian actors should
• Follow up evaluation recommendations on inclusion and participation of
They can share their knowledge and expertise involve peer-support groups or individuals with
persons with disabilities.
about disability, provide leadership, and ensure that disabilities.
• Ensure that persons with disabilities participate in sectoral and intersectoral
evaluation.
• Promote the use of tools tested in humanitarian contexts, such as the Wash-
• Support the appointment of staff with relevant expertise in disability inclusion ington Group Short Set of Disability Questions for data collection, which make
(as disability focal points, members of the humanitarian country teams, sector it possible to disaggregate data by sex, age and disability.
and cluster coordination mechanisms). • Advocate for the rights of persons with disabilities in situations of risk and
Coordination
• Encourage and support OPDs that represent the diversity of persons with emergencies and for all disaster risk reduction programmes and emergency
disabilities to become involved in humanitarian interventions and coordina- Preparedness preparedness programmes to be fully accessible to persons with disabilities.
tion mechanisms. • Raise awareness and provide training to community members, persons with
disabilities, humanitarian stakeholders, and first responders on the needs,
• Require partners to disaggregate information, including information on barriers rights and capacities of persons with disabilities. Explain their communications
and their removal, by sex, age and disability. requirements.
• Report on progress that is made to include persons with disabilities; share • Advocate for refugees with disabilities to have access to national services and
Information lessons learned and good practices. systems.
management97 • Where information is not available on a crisis or on the exposure to risks of • Participate in needs assessments and the collection of quantitative and quali-
affected persons with disabilities, assist partners to collect data on disability. tative information. Participate in identifying both barriers that impede the inclu-
Needs
• Require that the collection, storage or processing of sensitive personal data is assessment and sion of persons with disabilities and enablers that facilitate their inclusion.
carried out in line with appropriate data ethics and protection principles.98 analysis • Help to develop tools and design accessible needs assessments. These should
permit reasonable accommodations, and should include persons with disabil-
ities in assessment teams and focus group discussions, etc.

• Apply a rights-based approach to disability in order to make humanitarian stake-


holders and governments accountable when they design humanitarian response
Strategic plans and other humanitarian planning tools.
response • Represent disability constituencies in meetings and advocate for the rights of
planning persons with disabilities.
• Reach out to persons with disabilities from affected populations, including refu-
gees and other displaced persons, and include them in local OPD networks.

• Support the development of budgets that fund activities promoting the inclu-
sion of persons with disabilities. Budgets should make provision for reasonable
Resource
accommodations, appropriate housing, OPD participation, etc.
mobilization
• Support general advocacy to increase funding to respond to crises.
• Contribute to and facilitate mobilization of resources at all levels.

97 
Information management refers to collection, analysis and management of data and information across the humanitarian programme cycle.
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situations
98 

of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2)

64 65
9. Stakeholder roles and responsibilities Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

• Participate in data collection for monitoring and reporting on access to services


and assistance, protection risks, human rights violations, use of funding, etc.
Implementation
• Support interventions that benefit at-risk groups, including persons with
and monitoring disabilities.
• Advise on the development of accessible infrastructures, facilities and commu-
nication materials.

• Assist evaluation teams to assess accessibility and the degree to which persons
with disabilities can fully exercise their human rights, taking gender, age and
disability diversity into account.
• Identify appropriate questions for inclusion in evaluations. With respect to
persons with disabilities, evaluations should address accessibility, availability,
Evaluation affordability, accountability, and quality of services, as well as the effectiveness,
efficiency, impact and the relevance of the response.
• In cooperation with government and humanitarian stakeholders, collect and
document good practices and lessons learned, with respect to inclusion and
the accessibility of assistance and protection.
• Advocate that evaluation findings must be integrated in programme planning
and implementation.

• Identify focal points in OPDs who can participate in cluster and sub-cluster
meetings at all levels, including as members of the humanitarian response team.
• Coordinate OPDs (both national and local) and contribute their inputs, using the
Coordination 5W tool, to humanitarian coordination mechanisms.99
• Participate in collecting information on risks and barriers that persons with
disabilities face, and their access to services. Provide feedback to humanitar-
ian actors and disability focal points.

• Encourage information managers to collect and analyse information on the


degree to which persons with disabilities have access to assistance and protec-
tion services.
• Support the interpretation and analysis of information on disability trends and
disability programmes.
Information
management100
• Ensure that information is disseminated in multiple accessible formats to OPD
members, persons with disabilities, and other audiences.
• Communicate data and assessments on persons with disabilities to disability
focal points and coordination mechanisms.
• Require that the collection, storage or processing of sensitive personal data is
carried out in line with appropriate data ethics and protection principles.101

99 
The Who does What, Where, When and for Whom (5W) tool is used to capture data from the field and generate information products, such as maps
and tables of achievement. The 5Ws tool can help avoid unintentional duplication by different agencies, and assists stakeholders, including affected
communities and local governments, to identify response gaps.
100 
Information management refers to collection, analysis and management of data and information across the humanitarian programme cycle.
101 
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa-
tions of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

66 67
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

10 What sectors
need to do

10. What sectors need to do

Sector and intersectoral coordination Addressing disability in coordination


mechanisms
Humanitarian coordination seeks to improve
the effectiveness of a humanitarian response by Disability inclusion is an opportunity to strengthen
strengthening predictability, accountability and part- intersectoral coordination. Intersectoral coordina-
nership. tion mechanisms should ensure that persons with
disabilities have access to assistance and protec-
Sectoral and intersectoral coordination provide lead- tion on an equal basis with other people affected
ership and guidance in implementing humanitarian by a crisis and should consider OPDs to be human-
action by agreeing commitments and actions that itarian stakeholders. Achieving these goals at inter-
improve inclusion and participation. Coordination agency, sectoral and intersectoral levels will promote
mechanisms can take different forms, and several may the centrality of protection, support a rights-based
be implemented simultaneously in the same country. approach, and increase accountability to affected
populations (AAP).
Cluster and sector coordination mechanisms are
activated (when required) by the Emergency or Actions that humanitarian coordination mecha-
Humanitarian Coordinator, or Resident Coordina- nisms should take to promote inclusion of persons
tor with the humanitarian country team (HCT) and with disabilities are listed in the table on stakeholder
the government concerned. Activation triggers the roles and responsibilities.
humanitarian programme cycle.

While coordination mechanisms increasingly Key elements – must do


address disability through working groups, coordi-
nation remains ad hoc and inconsistent. Disability ‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken throughout
is not yet systematically included in inter-agency intersectoral and sectoral coordination in all phases
coordination mechanisms. of humanitarian action for inclusion of persons with
disabilities.
Where cluster/sector coordination mechanisms
have not been established, or are only partly acti-
vated, concerned governments may set up their Participation
own coordination system. Whatever form coordi-
nation mechanisms adopt, it is imperative to include • Ensure that persons with disabilities, their
organizations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) in families and OPDs are actively involved in
government-led coordination processes and other coordination mechanisms, intersectoral
response strategies. needs assessments, and the development of

69
10. What sectors need to do Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Humanitarian Needs Overviews and Humani- Data collection and monitoring


tarian Response Plans (HRPs).
• Share available data on sector-related require-
• Ensure that the diversity of the population of ments of persons with disabilities and engage
persons with disabilities is fairly represented. in joint intersectoral analysis to achieve a
Consider the various forms of disability, and holistic understanding of their situation and
gender and age. Make concerted efforts to requirements.
promote underrepresented groups, includ-
ing persons with intellectual and psychoso- • Where reliable data are unavailable or cannot
cial disabilities, indigenous persons, women be collected, apply the 15 per cent estimate
and girls. of global disability prevalence.102

• Ensure that humanitarian response plans


Addressing barriers explicitly reference disability across sectors,
and clearly recommend that targets and indi-
• When conducting needs assessments, iden- cators should disaggregate data by disability.
tify barriers and risks that persons with
disabilities face. • Ensure that the HCT’s periodic monitor-
ing reports routinely cover the situation of
• When developing humanitarian response persons with disabilities (including their
plans, draw on qualitative as well as quanti- access to humanitarian assistance, the chal-
tative information on persons with disabilities lenges they face, achievements, and lessons
in order to identify persons with disabilities, learned). 
the risks and barriers they face, and means
to mitigate or remove these barriers. • Share information on persons with disabilities
(disaggregated by sex, age and disability) in
intersectoral dashboards and reporting, using
Empowerment and capacity development multiple accessible formats.

• Ensure that coordination mechanisms include


OPDs in their capacity-building initiatives.

• Build the capacity of coordination personnel


on disability inclusion. Incorporate compo-
nents on disability inclusion in coordination
trainings.

• Establish intersectoral referral pathways


that increase the inclusion of persons with
disabilities.

WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).


102 

70 71
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

11
11. Camp coordination and camp management
Camp coordination
and camp management

Introduction See Chapter 10, Shelter and settle-


ments and WASH.
Camp coordination and camp management
(CCCM) is a technical sector. The term refers to
standardized coordination mechanisms that may coordination at inter-site level (camp coordination);
be applied in refugee operations (through the and overall supervision of the response (camp
Refugee Coordination Model), and also in opera- administration). Governance and participation
tions to protect internally displaced persons (IDPs) structures can take the form of committees, inter-
(through the CCCM Cluster).103 The CCCM sector’s est or influence groups, or feedback and complaint
primary objective is to protect the rights of popu- mechanisms, etc.; together, these structures ensure
lations affected by forced displacement (but also that all individuals are able to have their voices
host families and communities). heard and participate in decisions that affect them.

In practice, the sector works to ensure that those In sites that host displaced populations, the CCCM
living in collective or communal displacement sector also plays a key role in coordination and
settings have equitable access to assistance and monitoring of assistance and protection services.
protection. This is achieved by coordinating and It ensures that needs are identified and covered,
monitoring the delivery of services and establish- that responsible sectors or actors fill gaps, and that
ing representative and accountable governance services are not duplicated. Site-level coordination
and participation structures at site level (camp meetings are often attended by all sectors, from
management); providing strategic and operational WASH and shelter to protection, education and distri-
bution, as well as representatives from the displaced
population, camp security and the host community.

Key legal instruments and other frameworks

• Convention on the Rights of Persons with


Disabilities

• Global Compact on Refugees


• Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regu-
lar Migration

UNHCR, Emergency Handbook: Camp Coordination, Camp Management.


103 

73
11. Camp coordination and camp management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Key terms in the overall humanitarian displacement response, often unable to take care of their most basic needs • CCCM Cluster, MHPSS in Emergency Settings:
and is led by UNHCR and/or IOM, often in tandem or obtain adequate assistance and protection. What should Camp Coordination and Camp
Camps/sites. The terms ‘camp’ or ‘site’ refer to a with national authorities. The CCCM Cluster (in IDP Management Actors Know? (2014).
variety of temporary settlement options that include situations) or Sector Lead Agency (in refugee situ- Persons with disabilities who are hosted in tempo-
planned camps, self-settled camps, collective ations) strives to deliver an effective and efficiently rary settlements are entitled to receive humanitarian
centres, reception centres, transit centres and evac- coordinated humanitarian response in situations assistance. In practice, this means that humanitarian Key elements – ‘must do’
uation centres.104 Because the word ‘camp’ is sensi- where displaced populations are forced to seek actors must act to identify and remove environmen-
tive in many contexts, CCCM actors use a range of refuge in temporary settlements. It improves living tal, attitudinal and institutional barriers that impede ‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases
terms when referring to displacement settings. It is conditions during displacement, provides assis- their access to assistance and protection. Persons of humanitarian action when implementing inclusive
recognized that camps are not the solution to popu- tance and protection, seeks durable solutions to with disabilities in camps are also entitled to exercise CCCM programming for persons with disabilities.
lation displacement, but sometimes they offer the end temporary displacement, and finally manages their right to participate in camp life and in decisions
only available way to protect and assist a displaced the organized closure and phase-out of sites that that concern them. This implies that humanitarian
population. The CCCM sector does not advocate the have hosted displaced populations. The lead agency actors must ensure they can meaningfully partic- Participation
establishment of camps. or cluster seeks to end displacement of persons ipate in site governance and representative struc-
by promoting durable solutions. IOM and UNHCR tures, give them effective access to information and • Actively involve persons with disabilities,
Camp administration. Camp administrations fulfil co-lead the Global CCCM Clusters for natural disas- feedback and complaint mechanisms, and ensure their families, and organizations of persons
the functions of government or national authorities ter and conflict-induced IDP situations respectively, they can participate in social events and economic with disabilities (OPDs) in identifying barri-
in camps and camp activities.105 as well as other clusters in the field, often in tandem activities. The responsibility to remove barriers and ers. Ensure they participate in planning,
with national authorities.108 promote meaningful inclusion and participation designing, implementing, monitoring and
Camp management. Camp management coordi- persists in all phases of the life of a site, from plan- evaluating site infrastructures, and protec-
nates and monitors services, protection and assis- Evacuation centres are buildings used to provide ning and set-up, through care and maintenance, to tion and assistance services at displace-
tance on one camp or site, in compliance with the temporary shelter for persons fleeing a specific closure and durable solutions. ment sites.
relevant national and international legal protec- and immediate threat, such as fighting, or a natural
tion frameworks and minimum humanitarian stan- hazard, such as a cyclone or an earthquake. Schools, • Ensure that persons with disabilities are fairly
dards.106 It encourages active and meaningful sports arenas and religious or civic buildings are Standards and guidelines represented in site governance mechanisms,
participation by the displaced population. Camp often used for this purpose. Wherever possible, such as site management committees, tech-
management is both technical and social in that emergency evacuation centres should be identified • UNHCR, Working with Persons with Disabili- nical committees for shelter, WASH, food
it strives to provide appropriate living conditions and prepared before disasters occur.109 ties in Forced Displacement (2019). distribution, safety and security, and other
(through inter-agency coordination at camp level) formal and informal participation structures,
and sustain social inclusiveness and dignity (through Local preparedness committees are communi- • Sphere, Sphere Standards Handbook (2018). such as community groups, women’s groups,
participation, feedback and governance structures). ty-based or government response structures that youth groups, etc. When planning represen-
Camp management may be undertaken by humani- oversee disaster preparedness measures.110 • Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, tation, take into account the range of forms
tarian actors (UNHCR, IOM, INGOs, national NGOs), Humanitarian inclusion standards for older of disability as well as age, gender and diver-
civil society organizations, private sector institutions, people and people with disabilities (2018). sity. Make concerted efforts to promote
or the government or national authorities.107 Barriers underrepresented groups of persons with
• IOM, Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR, disabilities, such as persons with intellec-
Camp coordination. Camp coordination is respon- Displacement is often sudden, and limited time is Camp Management Toolkit (2015). tual and psychosocial disabilities, indigenous
sible for coordinating the response between sites, usually available to prepare for it. It is a disruptive persons, women and girls.
and provides access to, and delivers, humanitarian event that can exacerbate or create barriers for • CCCM Cluster, Collective Centre Guidelines
services and protection at sites that host displaced persons with disabilities. In temporary sites hosting (2010). • Involve persons with disabilities in commu-
populations. It coordinates roles and responsibilities displaced populations, persons with disabilities are nity activities and feedback and complaint
• Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement mechanisms. Promote effective and barri-
IOM, Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR, Camp Management Toolkit (2015), p. 9.
104 
(2004). er-free access that is respectful of all types
In practice, where the government or national authorities oversee camp management or camp coordination, camp management, camp coordination
105  of disability.
and camp administration share the responsibilities in a variety of ways. • CCCM, Urban Displacement and Out of Camps
 ee, for instance, the Sphere Standards, Core humanitarian standard; and Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, Humanitarian inclusion standards
S
106 
Review (2013).
for older people and people with disabilities, among others.
See IOM, Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR, Camp Management Toolkit (2015) and CCCM Cluster’s training material.
107 

See IOM, Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR, Camp Management Toolkit (2015), p. 14.
108 

Ibid, p. 18.
109 

Global Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) Cluster, The MEND Guide – Comprehensive Guide for Planning Mass Evacuations in
110 

Natural Disasters (2014), p. 23.

74 75
11. Camp coordination and camp management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Diagram 6 | Barriers to access and inclusion in CCCM Addressing barriers • Train OPDs in CCCM to support an inclusive
response and to facilitate the meaningful
HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS • Identify and monitor barriers that prevent participation of persons with disabilities.
persons with disabilities from accessing
WITH DISABILITIES IN CCCM services in temporary settlements. Seek solu- • Recruit persons with disabilities and OPDs to
tions that will remove barriers and take steps contribute to capacity-building activities that
to provide reasonable accommodations. camps provide.
IMPACT OF CRISIS
Insecurity, breakdown of social networks, destruction of infrastructure, • Encourage all contractors to adopt universal
displacement, closure of services design principles when they plan and build Data collection and monitoring
sites.
• Across the humanitarian programme cycle,
• Make sure that all information and commu- systematically collect and analyse data on
nications (regarding assistance and protec- persons with disabilities, disaggregated by sex,
tion services, durable solutions, site closure age and disability. Use the data to measure the
procedures, etc.) are made available in multi- degree to which persons with disabilities have
!         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS ple accessible formats. Consider the needs effective access to essential documentation
of persons with hearing, visual, intellectual and available services (such as registration
and psychosocial disabilities. processes, disability certificates, birth regis-
Environmental barriers: tration). Where reliable data are unavailable or
• Inaccessible and unsafe camp set up and infrastructure • Implement strategies to reduce stigma- cannot be collected, use the 15 per cent esti-
• Camp administration services and facilities are inaccessible tization of disability. Raise community mate of global disability prevalence.111
• Lack of accessible communication related to camp life awareness of the rights of persons with
• Inadequate location of public buildings
• Unavailability of mobility devices, other assistive devices and technology, as well as
disabilities. Establish support groups. • Map service routes and their accessibility;
Encourage persons with psychosocial and map access to facilities and resources. Set
specific aid services provided in the camp
intellectual disabilities to become advocates up referral systems.
themselves.
Attitudinal barriers:
• Stigma against persons with disabilities during displacement • Share information on barriers to access that
• CCCM staff assume that persons with disabilities do not have the capacity to • Review sectoral policies, guidelines and are associated with specific sectors and
contribute to leadership and decision-making at the community level tools to ensure that they clearly affirm the partners (WASH, protection, education) and
right of persons with disabilities to access ensure cross-sectoral coordination when
Institutional barriers: and inclusion. required.
• Lack of technical capacity to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities in
CCCM • Ensure that data ethics and protection prin-
• Lack of consideration of persons with disabilities in sector standards, guidelines and Empowerment and capacity development ciples (including confidentiality, provision of
policies information, informed consent, security) are
• No budget provision for access and accommodation of persons with disabilities at • Build the capacity of CCCM actors and respected whenever data on persons with
camps partners working in temporary settlements disabilities are collected and used.112
(responders, staff, service providers, contrac-
tors). Offer awareness training on the rights
of persons with disabilities, including the
intersection of disability with age, gender,
migration status, religion and sexuality.

Risks faced by persons with disabilities


Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health,
exclusion, isolation, abandonment WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).
111 

See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa-
112 

tions of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

76 77
11. Camp coordination and camp management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery

Map stakeholders. Include national interest organizations


and government agencies with a disability portfolio (such X
as Ministries of Health, Education, Social Services, Housing,
Public Works…). Reinforce existing networks.

MAINSTREAMED TARGETED Involve, consult and seek feedback from persons with disabil-
ities and OPDs on access to services, assistance and protec-
CCCM programmes and coordination struc- CCCM agencies take specific actions to X X
tion. Identify barriers and actions to remove them, as well as
tures are designed and adapted to ensure accommodate the needs of persons with measures that will facilitate access.
that the assistance and protection services disabilities and ensure they have access to
Using trained staff, organize and implement inclusive registra-
provided in temporary settlements, as well as site infrastructure, services, information, and
tion systems and processes that identify persons with disabili-
governance structures and other activities, are two-way communication systems. They seek X X
ties by means of differentiated data matrices for gender, age and
inclusive of and accessible to everyone, includ- to empower persons with disabilities through disability. Take steps to include the full range of disabilities.113
ing persons with disabilities. participation and governance mechanisms.
Include persons with disabilities in assessments, operational
planning, strategic design, programme implementation, and X X
monitoring activities.
The following guidance will support CCCM actors support persons and caregivers, when they try to
to identify and remove the barriers faced by access infrastructures, information and services Ensure that plans incorporate exit and solution strategies, and
persons with disabilities, as well as their families, in camps. that these are accessible to persons with disabilities and can X X
accommodate their requirements.

Recommended actions Ensure that the collection, storage and processing of sensitive
X X
personal data is carried out with appropriate data protection.
Preparedness Response Recovery
2. Resource mobilization
1. Assessment, analysis and planning
Consider the needs of persons with disabilities from the outset,
and mainstream inclusion into all aspects of the displacement
Review policies, guidelines, tools and standard operating X X X
response, including emergency evacuation, access to sites,
procedures using the IASC guidelines on inclusion of persons X
access to services, identification of durable solutions, etc.
with disabilities.
Identify the skills and experience needed in the team. Consider
Form partnerships with OPDs. Invite them to explore areas
recruitment to secure sufficient technical expertise. Recruit staff
of collaboration and train CCCM staff and stakeholders on X X
with disabilities or staff who know how to include persons with
disability.
disabilities. Involve OPDs, if feasible.
Build the skills and knowledge of CCCM actors and stakehold-
X Ensure funding is flexible. Carry out site improvements to
ers on inclusion of persons with disabilities.
remove obstacles. Make necessary accommodations to ensure
Conduct identification and accessibility audits of collective/ that persons with disabilities have direct access to services and X
X X can participate in governance structures and other activities.
evacuation centres, including site set-up.
(Consider provision of transport, interpreters, etc.)
Identify and analyse risks and barriers. During planning, design
X
mitigation measures to address these.

See UNHCR, Working with Persons with Disabilities in Forced Displacement (2011); see also the registration tools and specific requirement codes in IOM,
113 

Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR, Camp Management Toolkit (2015), p. 141.

78 79
11. Camp coordination and camp management Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

3. Implementation Support efforts by national authorities to address barriers to


access and inclusion that persons with disabilities face. Discuss
X
Involve persons with disabilities and OPDs in site planning and solutions and offer appropriate support (for example, training
improvement meetings. Seek their advice on how to remove X X and capacity-building).
barriers and reduce protection risks.
Advocate for the rights of persons with disabilities; for the
Support or establish governance mechanisms that ensure removal of barriers that impede their inclusion and their access
persons with disabilities can participate in formal and informal X X to services and protection; and for the integration of targeted X X X
processes of consultation and decision-making. services for persons with disabilities in sectoral responses and
programmes.
Ensure information campaigns and complaint and feedback
mechanisms are accessible to all, independent of disability, and 5. Monitoring and evaluation
are disseminated in multiple accessible formats (oral, print, sign X X
language, easy-to-read/plain language, etc.), and in languages Make complaint and feedback mechanisms accessible to
spoken by the affected community. persons with all types of disability, including those who stay in X X
their shelters or homes.
Monitor the degree to which persons with disabilities success-
fully obtain access to general services and to services targeting X X Involve women, men, girls and boys with a representative range
X X
persons with disabilities. of disabilities in monitoring activities and teams.

Set up or support committees, interest groups, or peer-support Monitor site and services accessibility, as well as protection
groups of persons with disabilities in the camps. Take steps to risks (including GBV) that might affect persons with disabilities.
X X X X X
ensure that camp groups and OPDs inside and outside the camp Do so by regular audits. Consult persons with disabilities as well
adequately represent the diversity of persons with disabilities. as protection teams, OPDs, etc.

Ensure that camp infrastructures (latrines, water, shelter) are Conduct evaluations and use their findings to adjust program-
maintained. Make changes and identify resources to improve X X ming and ensure better inclusion. Share lessons learned and X X X
accessibility. integrate good practices in preparedness plans.

Involve persons with disabilities in all activities and deci-


sion-making processes related to durable solutions. Arrange X
‘go and see’ and ‘come and tell’ visits. Tools and resources • IOM, NRC, UNHCR, The Camp Management
Toolkit (2015)
4. Coordination
• CCCM Cluster website
Coordinate and promote the implementation of international • UNHCR, Conclusion on refugees with disabil-
standards in camps (including these guidelines). Agree stan- X X X • CCCM Cluster, The Collective Centre Guide- ities and other persons with disabilities
lines (2010) protected and assisted by UNHCR (2010)
dards and monitor and evaluate their application.114

Ensure that meeting spaces are accessible. Take steps to • CCCM Cluster, Urban Displacement and Out • UN Refugee Agency et al., Working with
provide reasonable accommodation for persons with disabili- of Camps Review (2013) people with disabilities in forced displace-
X X X ment (2019)
ties (provide sign language interpreters, easy-to-read materials,
additional lighting, etc.). • Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement
(2004)

• IASC, Mental Health and Psychosocial


Support in Emergency Settings: What should
Humanitarian Health Actors know? (2011)
See The Sphere Project (2018); and Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, Humanitarian inclusion standards for older people and people with
114 

disabilities (2018).

80 81
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

12 Education

12. Education

Introduction See also the sections on WASH, CCCM,


Health, Nutrition and Protection.
Education in emergencies provides lifesaving and
life-sustaining psychosocial, physical and cogni-
tive support. It can sustain the progress of children
who were in education and create opportunities for Key legal instruments and other frameworks
those who missed out, via accelerated education
programmes, vocational training, and other non-for- • Sustainable Development Goal 4
mal and formal learning programmes. Through
education, people living through crises learn key
• UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with
Disabilities
survival skills and risk reduction strategies, includ-
ing how to protect themselves from sexual abuse, • The Dakar Framework for Action
infections and explosive devices, and acquire essen-
tial information about their rights, and about health • The Salamanca Statement and Framework
for Action
and nutrition. Education can be a transforming,
peace-building force that strengthens resilience to
• UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
future shocks and offers a vital space of normality
and routine to children, young people and adults who • UN Convention on the Elimination of All
have been profoundly affected by emergencies. Forms of Discrimination against Women

Inclusive, equitable education in emergencies can • International Covenant on Economic, Social


and Cultural Rights
enhance learning opportunities for all, improve
outcomes, generate innovation, assist governments • Universal Declaration of Human Rights
to ‘build back better’, and normalize or embed inclu-
sion in systems emerging from crises.

During emergencies, humanitarian organizations


play a fundamental role in restoring education
systems by supporting the efforts of national govern-
ments. This can be a transformative opportunity, if
governments are willing to prioritize the inclusion
of learners with disabilities and ensure that national
and local frameworks comply with recognized global
standards and guidelines on inclusion of persons
with disabilities.

83
12. Education Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Key terms a classroom, in small groups in a resource room, or Diagram 7 | Barriers to access and inclusion in education
one-to-one inside or outside a regular classroom.119
Education in emergencies refers to programmes that
provide learning opportunities in situations of crisis Accessibility applies to buildings, information, commu- HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS
to people of all ages. Programmes offered include nication, curricula, educational materials (including WITH DISABILITIES IN EDUCATION
early childhood development, primary, secondary, textbooks), teaching methods, assessment, language,
non-formal, technical, vocational, higher and adult support services, school transport, water and sanita-
education. Education in emergencies provides phys- tion, school cafeterias and recreational spaces.
IMPACT OF CRISIS
ical, psychosocial and cognitive protection that can
sustain and save lives. It is essential in situations of Closure of schools, destruction of infrastructure including roads leading to schools, displacement leading
conflict, violence, forced displacement, disasters and Barriers to reduced teacher capacity, insecurity, breakdown of social networks
public health emergencies. Conceptually, ‘education
in emergencies’ is broader than, but also an essential Learners with disabilities are routinely the most
element of, an ‘emergency education response’.115 marginalized and excluded group in education
systems, including in emergencies.
Inclusive education systems include all students
and welcome and support them, regardless of back- Barriers that keep learners with disabilities out of
ground, capacities or requirements. To meet this aim, early childhood care and development, schools, !         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
teaching, curricula, school buildings, classrooms, colleges and universities are amplified during
play areas, transport and toilets must be appropriate conflicts. Barriers may be environmental, attitudi- Environmental barriers:
for all children at all levels. Inclusive education means nal or institutional.
• Inaccessible and unsafe transport, roads, buildings, playgrounds, WASH facilities,
that all children learn together in the same schools.116 etc.
The term intersectionality recognizes the many • Unavailability of assistive devices and alternative or augmented communications
Special education provides education to children elements of individual identity, such as gender, • Inadequate location of temporary learning facilities and child friendly spaces
with disabilities in a segregated learning environ- ethnicity, age, economic status and disability, and
ment, such as a special school or centre, which that these interact in ways that often compound Attitudinal barriers:
is often isolated from the community, other chil- advantage or disadvantage. Intersectionality can
• Stigma against learners with disabilities
dren and mainstream schools.117 Special schools influence the degree to which a learner is margin-
• Education staff assume learners with disabilities do not have the capacity to learn
are usually organized by impairment (for example, alized or not included in emergency preparedness, or benefit from education
schools for the blind or deaf).118 response and recovery. It is also important to recog-
nize that there is diversity within disability. Learners
Institutional barriers:
Learners refers to those who are enrolled or engaged with disabilities or with difficulties in learning are not
• Lack of technical capacity to promote the inclusion of learners with disabilities in
in educational activities, and also potential learn- a homogeneous group. A boy with an intellectual
education policies and programmes
ers who may currently be excluded. Learners with disability or a physical disability will face different
• No inclusive education policy or planning in place
disabilities include women, men, girls and boys. They barriers and may possess different strengths to a • No budget provision for inclusive education
may be in any type of formal or non-formal educa- boy who is deaf or blind. Persons with intellectual • Lack of disability data in Education Management Information Systems
tion: from early childhood care and development or psychosocial disabilities, particularly women and
programmes, in primary, secondary or tertiary educa- girls, can be the most marginalized during a human-
tion, or on vocational or lifelong learning courses. itarian response.120

Teachers include trained educators directly involved These and other factors, including location and remote-
in teaching students. They can be classroom teachers, ness, must be systematically identified and mitigated
special education teachers, or other types of teach- by applying strategies to ensure that education and
ers. They may work with students in a whole class in lifelong learning in an emergency are inclusive.
Risks faced by persons with disabilities
Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies/INEE. Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health, exclusion,
115 

UNICEF, Inclusive Education - Including children with disabilities in quality learning: what needs to be done? (2017).
116 

Handicap International, Policy Paper on Inclusive Education (2012) pp. 10–12.


117  isolation, bullying, heightened risk of violence and sexual harassment
Save the Children, Schools for all. Including disabled children in education (2002), p. 10.
118 

INEE, Minimum Standards for Education: Preparedness, Response, Recovery (2010), p. 94.
119 

EENET, The implications of ensuring equal access and inclusion of persons with intellectual disabilities and mental health issues in disaster risk
120 

reduction and humanitarian action, A rapid literature review (2017).

84 85
12. Education Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Standards and guidelines with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities, Empowerment and capacity development • Map existing services, accessible education
indigenous persons, women and girls in formal facilities, OPDs and key stakeholders, and
• Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emer- and informal mechanisms and processes. • Mainstream protection and safeguarding where learners with disabilities reside.
gencies, Minimum Standards for Education: measures across education and learning
Preparedness, Response, Recovery (2010) • Develop partnerships with OPDs and other activities. Inform learners with disabilities • Together with OPDs and the community, iden-
organizations working in education. Involve of protection and safeguarding measures tify groups or individuals with disabilities who
• Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, them in supporting teachers and learners and how to access them. Recognize the may be out of school as well as those who
Humanitarian inclusion standards for older with disabilities, providing personal assis- gendered dimension of some protection and require immediate support. Connect them
people and people with disabilities – Educa- tance, and advocating for and supporting safeguarding risks. to protection, health and other relevant
tion section (2018) inclusive education. services.
• Build the capacity of teachers and school
• UNHCR, Education Emergency Standard personnel (including staff involved in trans- • Share information on the cross-sectoral
(Version 1.5) Addressing barriers port, canteens, and other school-related needs of learners with disabilities in inter-
services). Provide training on, and make agency coordination mechanisms (such
• INEE, Pocket Guide to Supporting Learners • Identify and monitor barriers and solutions to them aware of, the principles of inclusive as WASH, protection, health), and ensure
with Disabilities (2010) education and learning, and support learners pedagogy and the rights of persons with cross-sectoral coordination.
with disabilities to meet their requirements disabilities.
• INEE, Education in Emergencies: Including and psychosocial needs. • Ensure that data ethics and protection prin-
Everyone (2009, INEE pocket guide to inclu- • Build the capacity of OPDs to enable them to ciples (including confidentiality, provision of
sive education) • To ensure that education is accessible to learn- contribute to the design, delivery and moni- information, informed consent, security) are
ers with disabilities, enable all students to enrol toring of education programmes. respected whenever data on persons with
• UNHCR, Education in Emergencies in mainstream courses and provide reasonable disabilities are collected and used.124
accommodation to meet their requirements by • Engage persons with disabilities and OPDs
removing barriers to participation in physical in all community mobilization and outreach • Review education standards and tools and
Key elements – must do and digital121 environments. Include learning activities. make sure they recommend the collection
spaces and areas where children play, eat and of data on learners with disabilities, and their
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases congregate.122 • Ensure that inclusive education systems disaggregation by sex, age and disability.
of humanitarian action when implementing inclusive (including through international coopera-
education programming for persons with disabilities. • Encourage all service providers to apply tion) are able to include and meet the require- These guidelines conform to the INEE Minimum
universal design principles when they plan ments of persons with disabilities. Standards. These standards apply to emergencies,
and build education and learning facilities. including natural and human-made disasters, to situ-
Participation ations of conflict, and to slow and rapid onset crises,
• Ensure that all education assessment and Data collection and monitoring in both rural and urban environments. They affirm
• Ensure that persons with disabilities, children, reporting tools, as well as information and the rights, needs and dignity of people affected by
their families, and organizations of persons communications, are issued in multiple • Collect and analyse data on learners with disasters.
with disabilities (OPDs) are involved and accessible formats, meeting the require- disabilities, disaggregated by sex, age and
actively participate in decision-making, identi- ments of persons with hearing, visual, intel- disability. Do so systematically, across the Education authorities and humanitarian orga-
fying barriers, planning, designing, implement- lectual and psychosocial disabilities. humanitarian programme cycle, in education nizations should adopt a twin-track approach to
ing, monitoring and evaluating all policies and management information systems, national promote inclusive education in emergencies.
programmes that support access to educa- • Run public awareness campaigns to address reporting databases and other systems. Disability-specific interventions targeted to meet
tion for learners with disabilities. stigma and discrimination and promote the Where reliable data are not available or the requirements of learners with disabilities should
rights of persons with disabilities. cannot be collected, use the 15 per cent esti- complement mainstream interventions that benefit
• Ensure that persons with disabilities are fairly mate of global disability prevalence.123 all learners.
represented, taking into account the various • Review sectoral policies, guidelines and
forms of disability as well as age, gender and tools to ensure that they clearly affirm the
diversity. Make concerted efforts to promote right of persons with disabilities to access
underrepresented groups, such as persons and inclusion.

For more information on digital accessibility, see CBM, Digital Accessibility Toolkit (2018).
121 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).
123 

 ee Annex 7 for a checklist on learning space accessibility. Article 9 of the CRPD, on accessibility, outlines the steps that States Parties should take
S
122 
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa-
124 

to enable persons with disabilities to live independently and participate in all aspects of life. tions of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

86 87
12. Education Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery


2. Resource mobilization
Identify and mobilize local resources (accessible transport,
community-based programmes, other forms of assistance) to X X
MAINSTREAMED TARGETED increase access to inclusive education.
Secure financing and prepare an inclusive budget that allocates
Education facilities and programmes are Education programmes are designed to X X
resources for accessibility and inclusion.
designed and adapted to ensure that they accommodate the individual requirements of
Ensure inclusive education is included in all funding appeals.
include and are accessible to everyone, includ- learners with disabilities. (For example, learn-
Ensure funding appeals allocate resources for accessible infra-
ing learners with disabilities. (For example, ing materials are accessible, assistive devices X X
structures and assistive devices, and for making reasonable
teachers are trained in inclusive pedagogy, the are provided, etc.) accommodations.
curriculum is learner-centred, etc.)
3. Implementation
With OPDs, develop response strategies that remove specific
X
The following guidance will support education actors persons and caregivers, when they access education barriers to inclusive education faced by learners with disabilities.
to identify and address barriers faced by persons programmes in humanitarian settings. Build the capacity and awareness of education staff (including
with disabilities, as well as their families, support teachers, school drivers and canteen staff) on inclusive educa-
X X
tion and use (and monitoring use) of assistive devices. Set up
maintenance schedules.
Recommended actions
Make communities aware of the importance of inclusive educa-
X X X
Preparedness Response Recovery tion and the need to fight stigma and discrimination.

1. Assessment, analysis and planning Develop learning materials that are comprehensive, culturally
X X X
appropriate and include all learners.
Together with OPDs, carry out assessments to identify and anal-
yse the barriers that keep children, youths and adult learners Make sure that engineers and architects adopt a universal design
X X X
with disabilities out of education opportunities. Do this in coor- approach when they build schools and other amenities.
X
dination with other sectors (such as child protection, MHPSS 4. Coordination
and WASH) in order to promote coordinated programming and
avoid assessment fatigue. Include OPDs in cluster and inter-agency coordination mecha-
X X X
nisms.
Adapt the Global Education Cluster’s Joint Education Needs
Assessment Toolkit to: (1) prevent the exclusion of students with Create referral pathways that connect persons with disabilities
disabilities from mainstream settings; (2) ensure that reason- with specialized services (such as screening, identification and
X
able accommodations are made when needed; (3) clarify the X speech therapy), in order to promote inclusive education and
impacts of a crisis both on learners with disabilities and the identify students who need specific support.
education system. Identify capacity gaps and gaps in the provi- Work with cash transfer programmes to remove financial barriers
sion of disability-inclusive education. (such as the cost of transport or assistive devices) that prevent
Plan actions to strengthen inclusive education systems. (For households which include children with disabilities from access-
X X
practical ideas and resources refer to INEE, Pocket Guide to X X ing educational opportunities. Work with livelihoods programmes
Learners with Disabilities.) to make sure that households which include children with disabil-
ities can cover such costs in the long term.
Consult a wide range of data sources to analyse capacities and
X Coordinate with nutrition actors to provide accessible informa-
gaps in inclusive education.
tion on nutrition. Intervene together to support good feeding prac-
Establish a referral mechanism for providing students with tices for children with disabilities. Help to establish mechanisms X X
disabilities, and their families, with specific forms of assistance. X X X that can provide such support to children with disabilities who
Include cash support, prosthetic devices, protection services, etc. are out of school or receive home-based education.

88 89
12. Education Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery


5. Monitoring and evaluation
Collect baseline data on school enrolment for children with
disabilities to facilitate monitoring at programme and national
level. Advocate through good practice for the integration of the X X
UNICEF-Washington Group Child Functioning Module in the
national Education Management Information System.
Monitor the performance of protection and safeguarding
X X
measures for learners with disabilities.
Include learners with disabilities, their parents, and OPDs in
monitoring and evaluating educational activities. Ensure that the X X
findings of such exercises are shared and discussed.
Develop a knowledge management system to share learning and
good practices on inclusive education. Establish inter-school X X X
support systems to strengthen their capacity.

Tools and resources

• Committee on the CRPD, General Comment • Saebones, A. M., et al., Towards a Disability
4 on Article 24, the right to education (2016) Inclusive Education: Background paper for the
Oslo Summit (2015)
• INEE, Pocket Guide to Supporting Learners
with Disabilities (2010) • UNICEF, Including children with disabilities
in humanitarian action: Education guidance
• INEE, Pocket Guide to Inclusive Education (2018)
(2009)
• UNHCR, Education in Emergencies Guidance
• INEE, Guidance Note on Psycho-social
Support and Social Emotional Learning (2018) • UNICEF, Early Childhood Development in
Emergencies: Integrated Programme Guide
• INEE, Inclusive Education (2014)

• INEE, Teachers in Crisis Contexts – Training • UNICEF, Early Childhood Development in


for Primary School Teachers Humanitarian Action

• Inter-Agency Working Group on Accelerated • UNICEF and The Washington Group on


Education Disability Statistics, Module on Inclusive
Education (forthcoming)
• Kett, M., Risk, resilience and inclusive human-
itarian action, in UNICEF, State of the World’s
Children (2013)

90 91
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

13 Food security
and nutrition

13. Food security and nutrition

Introduction See also WASH, Health and Education.

Every human being has the right to adequate food


and to be free from hunger. This right is recognized Key legal instruments and other frameworks
in various international legal instruments, including
international humanitarian law (IHL), which governs • Convention on the Rights of Persons with
situations of armed conflict. Disabilities

Disability is linked to food security and nutrition in • Sustainable Development Goal 2


many ways. In particular, disability can adversely • Convention on the Rights of the Child
affect household food security and nutrition.
Research has shown that households that include • Convention on the Rights of Women
persons with disabilities are more likely to expe-
rience food insecurity, because they possess
fewer economic resources and fewer work
opportunities, require more health services, and Key terms
spend extra time on care work. When the person
with disabilities heads the household and is its Cash-based transfer and cash-based intervention
primary income earner, the chances of falling are used interchangeably to refer to all programmes
into food insecurity are generally higher. Malnu- that provide cash or vouchers to beneficiaries to
trition rates may also be higher among persons enable them to purchase goods or services directly.
with disabilities when they have difficulty eating In humanitarian contexts, the terms refer to cash
and swallowing, are frequently ill, or are neglect- or vouchers allocated to individuals, households or
ed.125 It is important to remember that slow and community recipients; they do not include financial
rapid onset emergencies can have significantly allocations to governments and other State actors.126
different effects, not least on the food insecurity
of persons with disabilities. Food access means that individuals of different ages
and gender, from diverse backgrounds, are able regu-
larly to acquire sufficient quantities of appropriate
foods to provide a nutritious diet, through purchase,
home production, barter, gifts, borrowing, or food aid

 hildren with disabilities may require more time and help to eat if they find it hard to suckle, hold spoons, sit upright, etc. Nora Groce, Eleanor Chal-
C
125 

lenger, Marko Kerac, Stronger Together: Nutrition-Disability Links and Synergies, Briefing Note, UNICEF; and UNICEF (2017), Including children with
disabilities in humanitarian action. Nutrition (2011), p. 13.
Adapted from Cash Learning Partnership, Cash Transfers Glossary.
126 

93
13. Food security and nutrition Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

(SDG Target 2.1). Persons with disabilities may not assistance remains an important solution in crisis Diagram 8 | Barriers to access and inclusion in food security and nutrition
have access to a reliable food supply or a well-bal- situations.
anced diet.
Livelihood refers to the means by which an individual HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS WITH
Food availability refers to the presence, consistently, secures the necessities of life. It covers a wide range DISABILITIES IN FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION
of sufficient quantities of food to meet the needs of of different forms of work, which may be remuner-
a given area. It may be achieved through domestic ated in kind (for example, food-for-work), in cash or
production or imported food aid. as a salary.
IMPACT OF CRISIS
Food consistency refers to the density, firmness or Malnutrition is a physiological condition caused by Destruction of infrastructure including roads leading to assistance, displacement, insecurity, breakdown
viscosity of food that is provided to children and inadequate, unbalanced or excessive consumption of social networks, closure of services
adults, including older persons who find eating diffi- of macro- and/or micro-nutrients. Expressions of
cult. The consistency of a food determines how easy malnutrition include undernutrition, overnutrition and
or difficult that food is to chew and swallow. The micro-nutrient deficiency.131
main categories of food consistency are unmodified
regular foods, soft foods (such as banana), minced Nutritional status132 is the physiological state of an
and moist foods, and blended foods.127 individual that results from the relationship between
nutrient intake and requirements and the body’s abil- !         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
Food security is achieved when a population has ity to digest, absorb and use those nutrients.
physical, social and economic access to sufficient, Environmental barriers:
safe and nutritious food to meets its food prefer- • Inaccessible and unsafe food distribution points
ences and dietary needs for an active and healthy Standards and guidelines • Lack of accessible information and communication related to food entitlement,
life (SDG Targets 2.3, 2.4).128 distribution and nutrition programmes
• Handicap International, CBM, HelpAge Inter- • Inaccessible transportation, buildings and food package formats
Food stability refers to both the availability and national, Humanitarian inclusion standards
access dimensions of food security; it highlights the for older people and people with disabilities Attitudinal barriers:
• First responders lack awareness and knowledge about persons with disabilities
need of a population to be food secure over time. (2018). See the section on food, nutrition and
• Lack of awareness and knowledge about specific nutrition requirements of per-
livelihoods
sons with disabilities
Food utilization refers to the nutritional effects of
processing, cooking and consuming foods. It covers • Sphere Handbook (2018). See the section on Institutional barriers:
cooking, storage and hygiene practices, individuals’ food security and nutrition • Lack of technical capacity to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities
health, water and sanitation, and the feeding and in food security and nutrition policies and programmes
sharing practices of households.129 • L ivestock Emergency Guidelines and • Government food security and nutrition policies and programmes are not inclu-
Standards sive of persons with disabilities
Food assistance for training/assets describes initia- • Lack of accurate data on persons with disabilities and their locations
tives that aim to meet the immediate food needs of • The Minimum Economic Recovery Standards
an affected population through cash, voucher or food (2017)
transfers, while building or rehabilitating assets that
improve long-term food security and resilience.130 • Cash Learning Partnership, Minimum Stan-
dard for Market Analysis MISMA (2018)
In-kind assistance refers to the direct provision of
goods (food) or services to beneficiaries. In-kind
Risks faced by persons with disabilities
Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health, exclusion,
UNICEF, Including children with disabilities in humanitarian action. Nutrition (2017), p. 108.
127 

Adapted from IFAD, WFP, FAO, The State of Food Insecurity in the World: The multiple dimensions of food security (2013), p. 50.
128  isolation, difficulty accessing food assistance, malnutrition
For the WFP definition of food access, availability and utilization, see Emergency Food Security Assessment Handbook (EFSA) – 2nd edition (2009).
129 

WFP, Food Assistance for Assets.


130 

IFAD, WFP, FAO, The State of Food Insecurity in the World: The multiple dimensions of food security (2013), p. 50.
131 

 o guidelines currently exist for measuring the nutritional status of persons with disabilities. Traditional methods, such as MUAC (mid-upper arm
N
132 

circumference), can be used, but these methods may be misleading, for example if people with disabilities have built up their upper-arm muscles to
aid mobility. Source: Humanitarian inclusion standards for older people and people with disabilities.

94 95
13. Food security and nutrition Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Key elements – must do • Make available all assessment and report- Data collection and monitoring • Share information on the cross-sectoral needs
ing tools, and information related to food of persons with disabilities in inter-agency
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases security and nutrition, in multiple accessi- • Collect and analyse food security and nutri- coordination mechanisms (WASH, protection,
of humanitarian action when implementing inclu- ble formats. Consider the requirements of tion data on persons with disabilities, disag- health) and ensure cross-sectoral coordination.
sive food and nutrition programming for persons persons with hearing, visual, intellectual and gregated by sex, age and disability. Do so
with disabilities. psychosocial disabilities. systematically in all phases of the humani- • Ensure that data ethics and protection principles
tarian programme cycle. Where reliable data (including confidentiality, provision of informa-
• Implement strategies to reduce disabili- are not available or cannot be collected, use tion, informed consent, security) are respected
Participation ty-related stigma. Raise awareness in the the 15 per cent estimate of global disability whenever data on persons with disabilities are
community about the rights of persons with prevalence.133 collected and used.134
• Ensure that persons with disabilities, their disabilities. Establish peer-support groups
families, and OPDs are actively involved in that include persons with psychosocial and
identifying barriers, and in planning, design- intellectual disabilities.
ing, implementing, monitoring and eval-
uating food security and nutrition policies • Review sectoral policies, guidelines and
and programmes. Consider a wide range tools to ensure that they clearly affirm the
of issues, including appropriate locations, right of persons with disabilities to access MAINSTREAMED TARGETED
time, frequency, distribution and assistance and inclusion.
arrangements. Food and nutrition distributions and pro- Food and nutrition programmes accommo-
grammes are designed and adapted to ensure date the individual requirements of persons
• Ensure that persons with disabilities are fairly Empowerment and capacity development
they include and are accessible to everyone, with disabilities, with respect to outreach,
represented, taking into account the full range
including persons with disabilities. infrastructure, communications, food rations,
of disabilities as well as age, gender and • Mainstream protection and safeguarding
diversity. Make concerted efforts to encour- measures in all food security and nutri- packaging, and assistive devices relevant to
age the participation of underrepresented tion programming. Inform persons with food and nutrition.
groups, including persons with intellectual disabilities of these measures and how
and psychosocial disabilities, indigenous to access them. Recognize the gendered
persons, women and girls in formal and dimension of some protection and safe-
informal mechanisms and processes that guarding risks. The following guidance will support food and nutri- support persons and caregivers, when they try to
address food security and nutrition. tion actors to identify and remove barriers faced by access food and nutrition programmes in human-
• Build the capacity of OPDs to enable them persons with disabilities, as well as their families, itarian settings.
• Recognize that, with adequate nutrition, to participate actively in all phases of food
persons with disabilities have the capacity security and nutrition programming, includ-
to participate in activities and in society on ing design, implementation and monitor- Recommended actions
an equal basis with others. ing. Enable them to represent the interests
of persons with disabilities in coordination Preparedness Response Recovery
structures and mechanisms.
Addressing barriers
1. Assessment, analysis and planning
• Strengthen the capacity of food security
• Identify and monitor barriers and solutions that actors to understand the risks and obstacles
Identify key information on the situations of persons with
impede the ability of persons with disabilities faced by persons with disabilities and how to
disabilities, including whether government food security and
to access food security and nutrition program- remove them in compliance with humanitar-
nutrition policies and programmes are inclusive. Analyse risks X
ming and services. Provide reasonable accom- ian principles.
and barriers that impede persons with disabilities from access-
modations to promote full inclusion.
ing food security and nutrition.
• Make food security actors aware of the rights
of persons with disabilities, and the interac-
tions between disability and age, gender,
migration status, religion and sexuality.
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).
133 

See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa-
134 

tions of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

96 97
13. Food security and nutrition Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Map information and resources on food and nutrition that are Prepare a contingency plan that sets out the initial response
relevant to persons with disabilities (expertise, markets, acces- strategy and the operational plan to meet urgent food and nutri-
X
sibility of services) at community, district and national level. tion needs during the first three to four weeks of an emergency; X
Use this information when planning. ensure it includes persons with disabilities and covers transport
and food rations.
When conducting food security and nutrition assessments,
X
involve persons with disabilities in affected communities. Involve OPDs and other actors who work with persons with
disabilities in designing and delivering an inclusive food secu-
Conduct targeted assessments of the food security and nutri- X
rity and nutrition assessment. Identify barriers to delivering the
tion requirements of persons with disabilities. Focus on chil- assessment and to implementing interventions.
dren, pregnant and lactating women, and older persons with
disabilities. Consider assisted eating and dietary requirements, Assess the capacity of staff with respect to disability inclusion.
X X
and the nutritional quality of foods, including processed foods Provide training to staff and partners, including emergency
(proteins and other nutrients). Identify the types of food required managers and first responders. Trainings should explain the
X
(such as liquid foods) and adapt the size and format of food rights and requirements of persons with disabilities and make
packages accordingly. clear that disability needs to be integrated in food security and
nutrition-related preparedness plans.136
Include questions on the capacities and requirements of
persons with disabilities in mainstream assessment processes Find ways to reach marginalized and isolated affected popu-
and tools. Consider nutritional status, barriers to and enablers X X lations, including persons who have psychosocial disabili-
of food security, nutrition, livelihood activities, facilities, and ties, who are not mobile, or who face other barriers. Consider X X
related information.135 outreach and community-based distribution processes both to
prepare and deliver food.
2. Resource mobilization
Partner with relevant actors to design an inclusive food secu-
Encourage humanitarian actors to mobilize adequate resources rity and nutrition programme and to advocate for an inclusive X X
for food security and nutrition. Resources should be reliably approach to sectoral and cross-sectoral activities.
X
available during emergency preparedness and throughout the
Develop a community approach. Identify staff who will support
response and should be accessible to persons with disabilities.
persons with disabilities to access food rations (on site and
Allocate and mobilize resources for inclusive food security and via outreach). Provide reasonable accommodations; include X X
nutrition interventions that are accessible to and target persons assistance with transport, and childcare for parents of children
with disabilities. Set up coordination arrangements. Allocate X X with disabilities and for parents with disabilities.
sufficient resources in the budget to cover accessibility and
Ensure that vendors, other distribution points and markets, and
inclusion costs.
nutrition services and other facilities, meet the ‘Reach, Enter, X
Circulate and Use’ criteria of accessibility.
3. Implementation
Train relevant local and national staff on good nutrition prac-
Make community members aware of how important it is to X
tices for persons with disabilities.
adopt a disability-inclusive approach to food security and nutri-
X X
tion, during emergency preparedness, contingency planning, Work with national systems that have responsibility for food
response and recovery. security and nutrition, including social protection systems, to
put in place arrangements for supporting persons with disabil-
X
ities after the emergency ends. Establish clear referral mech-
anisms for persons with disabilities who require food security
and nutrition-related support.

 hen organizing trainings, make use of the resources available. For example, specialists can provide expertise on data collection, information,
W
136 

 aving a disability does not automatically imply food insecurity or malnutrition, or additional needs. How persons with disabilities experience emer-
H
135 
support services, etc. The International Disability and Development Consortium lists NGOs and organizations in a number of countries who can
gencies can differ greatly; assessment and targeting must be sensitive to this. provide support.

98 99
13. Food security and nutrition Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Advise government counterparts and other national stakehold- Document and report progress towards meeting the food secu-
ers on how to integrate disability-inclusive practices in relevant X rity and nutrition needs of persons with disabilities. Describe
X
national food security and nutrition programmes and trainings. progress in cross-sectoral monitoring and reporting (situation
reports and dashboards).
Advise on accessibility compliance during the construction, recon-
struction and repair of nutrition-related infrastructure. Include X List ‘inclusion of persons with disabilities’ among the criteria
sites that deliver nutrition and food security-related services. for evaluations of food security and nutrition programmes and X
activities.
4. Coordination
Systematically ensure that food security and nutrition interven-
Promote knowledge and skills on disability. Include disability tions are accountable to persons with disabilities by making
in the terms of reference of food security and nutrition-related information accessible, establishing complaint and feedback X
X mechanisms, and involving persons with disabilities in deci-
emergency rosters and other surge capacity mechanisms. Do
so at all levels. sion-making and planning processes.

Work with communication colleagues, disability experts and Document lessons learned with respect to the inclusion of persons
X
OPDs to develop inclusive community-based approaches and X with disabilities in food security and nutrition interventions.
accessible information on food security and nutrition.

In consultation with OPDs and relevant health and nutrition


actors, adapt the food basket to meet the nutritional and eating Tools and resources • Sphere Project, ‘Minimum Standards in Food
X Security and Nutrition’ in Sphere Handbook
needs of persons with disabilities who find it difficult to eat,
chew or swallow, or have specific dietary requirements. • Cash Learning Partnership and Handicap (2018)
International, As the movement for cash
At sectoral level, work with relevant sectors to create referral transfer programming advances, how can we • UNICEF, Including children with disabilities in
pathways to meet the food security and nutrition needs of X ensure that people with disabilities are not humanitarian action: Nutrition (2017)
persons with disabilities. left behind in cash transfer programming for

Work with national actors, including ministries and service


emergencies? (2016) • United Nations, Charter on the Inclusion of
Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian
providers, to make persons with disabilities more resilient with
respect to food security and nutrition. Strengthen food security X
• Cash Learning Partnership, Minimum Stan- Action (2016)
dard for Market Analysis (2017)
and nutrition policies and laws; ensure they include persons
with disabilities.
• United Nations, Convention on the Rights of
• Handicap International, Disability in human- Persons with Disabilities and Optional Proto-
itarian context. Views from affected people col (2008)
5. Monitoring and evaluation
and field organisations (2015)
Ensure feedback and complaint mechanisms are accessible • WFP, Guide to Inclusion of Persons with
and include persons with disabilities.
X • Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, Disabilities in Food Assistance (forthcoming)
Humanitarian inclusion standards for older
Include persons with disabilities in monitoring and evaluation
X
people and people with disabilities (2018) • WHO, Guidance Note on Disability and Emer-
teams. (part of the ADCAP programme) gency Risk Management for Health (2013)

Identify or develop disability-specific indicators to monitor the


X
food security and nutritional status of persons with disabilities.

Assess the degree to which food security and nutrition interven-


tions and facilities are accessible to persons with disabilities.
X
Include temporary ones. Take steps to make all interventions
and facilities accessible.

100 101
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

14 Livelihoods

14. Livelihoods

Introduction

In a disaster or conflict, loss of livelihood is one of the Key legal instruments and other frameworks
biggest impacts that a household can experience. It
affects people’s ability to survive. In addition, assets • Convention on the Rights of Persons
and resources may be destroyed or become inac- with Disabilities
cessible, and household support networks are often
disrupted. Livelihood programming assists people to
• Sustainable Development Goal 1
meet their basic needs and achieve self-reliance by • Sustainable Livelihoods Framework
helping them to recover and acquire (or reacquire)
access to resources and assets that will enable them • Global Compact on Refugees
to safely and sustainably secure a living.

International human rights law affirms that every


person has the right to work, to freely choose their
employment and to be protected from unemploy-
ment. However, persons of working age with disabil- The term sustainable livelihoods refers to the capac-
ities have very high unemployment rates in both ity of persons to generate and maintain a living and
developing and industrialized countries. In develop- enhance their own well-being and that of future
ing economies, unemployment is as high as 80–90 generations. A livelihood is sustainable when it
per cent.137 A number of factors explain this, includ- is market-based, can cope with and recover from
ing employer bias, the absence of accessible work- shocks and economic stress, and can maintain its
places, and poor access to information and finance. capabilities and assets without undermining the
The fact that the abilities of persons with disabilities natural environment.
are widely unrecognized, often by their families as
well, is also a contributing factor. The terms cash-based transfer and cash-based
intervention are used interchangeably to refer
to programmes that provide cash or vouchers to
Key terms beneficiaries to enable them to purchase goods
or services directly. In humanitarian contexts,
Livelihood refers to all activities, entitlements and they refer to cash or vouchers given to individuals,
assets by which people make a living. Livelihoods households or community recipients; they do not
are the means by which human beings make a living include allocations to governments or other State
and satisfy their daily needs. actors.138

UN, Disability and Employment Fact sheet 1.


137 

Adapted from Cash Learning Partnership, Cash Transfers Glossary.


138 

103
14. Livelihoods Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

In-kind assistance is the direct provision of goods and programmes. Include access to markets Diagram 9 | Barriers to access and inclusion in livelihoods
(food) or services to beneficiaries of assistance. and services, the length of trainings and their
In-kind assistance remains an important solution in arrangements, the frequency and arrange- HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS
crisis situations. ments for assistance, and decision-making. WITH DISABILITIES IN LIVELIHOODS
Coping strategies are actions to which people resort • Ensure that persons with disabilities are fairly
when times are hard. They enable people to continue represented, taking account of the range of
IMPACT OF CRISIS
to meet their basic needs during a crisis. They may disabilities, as well as sex, age and diver-
be reversible (for example, short-term reductions sity. Make concerted efforts to promote Insecurity, breakdown of social networks, destruction of infrastructure,
in food consumed, use of savings), or negative and the involvement of underrepresented displacement, closure of services
harder to reverse (for example, sale of productive groups, including persons with intellectual
assets, resort to degrading or criminal activities). and psychosocial disabilities, indigenous
persons, women and girls in formal and infor-
mal mechanisms and processes.
Standards and guidelines
Develop partnerships with OPDs and other orga-
• Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, nizations working on livelihoods. Involve them in !         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
Humanitarian inclusion standards for older supporting persons with disabilities and advocat-
people and people with disabilities (2018). ing for and promoting inclusive forms of assistance Environmental barriers:
See the section on food, nutrition and and services. • Inaccessible and unsafe markets, places of work and related facilities (e.g. toilets)
livelihoods. • Lack of accessible information on markets, social protection, how to use facilities, oppor-
tunities such as skills training, job openings, micro-credit or other financial services
• Sphere Handbook (2018). See the section on Addressing barriers • Inaccessible transportation and road infrastructure
food security and nutrition.
Attitudinal barriers:
• Identify and monitor barriers and take steps • Negative attitudes and discrimination against persons with disabilities in the workplace
• L ivestock Emergency Guidelines and to remove them, to ensure that livelihood and
• Lack of awareness and knowledge about capacities of persons with disabilities and their
Standards. economic inclusion programmes are acces-
possible contributions in the workplace
sible to persons with disabilities. Provide • Lack of confidence in the ability of persons with disabilities to successfully utilize financial
• Minimum Economic Recovery Standards reasonable accommodations and reach out services
(2017). to persons with disabilities to facilitate their
full inclusion. Institutional barriers:
• Cash Learning Partnership, Minimum Stan- • Lack of technical capacity to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities
dard for Market Analysis (MISMA) (2018). • Work with training and apprenticeship service in the workplace and in financial services
• Restrictive entry requirements for access to vocational training or micro-finance
providers, business development and finan-
cial service providers, potential employers, schemes such as educational qualifications, collateral, etc.
• Employment policies and programmes are not inclusive of persons with disabil-
Key elements – must do and apprenticeship providers to include
ities
persons with disabilities and ensure that all
• Lack of accurate data on persons with disabilities
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases of premises are accessible.
humanitarian action when implementing livelihood
programming for persons with disabilities. • Ensure that information on assessment and
reporting tools, and programmes (including
targeting criteria, duration, assistance arrange-
Participation ments, etc.), is made available in multiple
accessible formats that take into account the
• Ensure that persons with disabilities, their requirements of persons with hearing, visual,
families, and organizations of persons with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities. Risks faced by persons with disabilities
disabilities (OPDs), are actively involved in
Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health, exclusion, isolation
identifying barriers, and in planning, design- • Implement strategies to reduce stigma about
ing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating disability. Take steps to make the community
livelihood and economic inclusion policies aware of the rights of persons with disabilities.

104 105
14. Livelihoods Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Establish peer-support groups and encourage • Build the capacity of OPDs to enable them to The following guidance will support livelihood support persons and caregivers, when they try to
persons with psychosocial and intellectual contribute to the design, delivery and moni- actors to identify and remove barriers faced by access livelihood programmes in humanitarian
disabilities to become advocates themselves. toring of livelihood programmes, and repre- persons with disabilities, as well as their families, settings.
sent disability constituencies in coordination
• Review sectoral policies, guidelines and structures and mechanisms.
tools to ensure that they clearly affirm the Recommended actions
right of persons with disabilities to access
and inclusion. Data collection and monitoring Preparedness Response Recovery

• Ensure that all persons with disabilities in 1. Assessment, analysis and planning
Empowerment and capacity development target communities are identified.
Assess the accessibility of skills training, apprenticeships and
• Mainstream protection and safeguarding • Collect and analyse livelihood data on financial service providers, and markets and market-related X X
measures across livelihood and economic persons with disabilities, disaggregated information, for persons with different types of disability.
inclusion programming. Inform persons by sex, age and disability. Do so systemat-
with disabilities about these measures and ically across the humanitarian programme Identify OPDs who might help identify, access and support
X X X
how they can access them. Recognize the cycle. Where reliable data are not available persons with disabilities.
gendered dimension of some protection and or cannot be collected, use the 15 per cent
Identify and analyse risks related to livelihoods for persons
safeguarding risks. estimate of global disability prevalence.139
with different types of disability and plan risk mitigation X X X
measures.
• Build the capacity of livelihood stakehold- • Share information on the cross-sectoral
ers. Provide training on the rights of persons requirements of persons with disabilities
Assess the psychosocial requirements and literacy and
with disabilities, including the interactions in inter-agency coordination mechanisms
numeracy of persons with disabilities, in order to support X X
between disability and gender, age, migration (WASH, protection, health) and ensure
those who have not had a livelihood or access to education.
status, religion and sexuality. cross-sectoral coordination.
Identify referral services that are available in the target area.
• Strengthen the capacity of livelihood stake- • Ensure that data ethics and protection prin- Include psychosocial support, physical rehabilitation, pros- X X
holders to understand the risks and obsta- ciples (including confidentiality, provision thetics, orthotics, etc.
cles faced by persons with disabilities and of information, informed consent, security)
how to remove them in compliance with are respected whenever data on persons Ensure that livelihood targeting criteria adequately address
humanitarian principles. with disabilities are collected and used.140 X X
differences in the character and severity of disabilities.

Provide training on inclusive livelihoods for INGO staff and


other stakeholders. Include vocational trainers, farmers’
X X
associations, women’s groups, business persons, local
councils, private companies, third-party monitors, etc.

MAINSTREAMED TARGETED 2. Resource mobilization

Livelihood-related facilities and programmes are Livelihood programmes accommodate the individ- Hire persons with disabilities to join the project team. As
designed and adapted to ensure they are inclusive ual requirements of persons with disabilities, with role models, they may encourage others with a disability X X X
of and accessible to everyone, including persons respect to infrastructures, communications, tools, to participate in the programme.
with disabilities. assets and training (e.g. providing assistive tech-
Mobilize resources; apply them to prepare adaptive tools,
nology, modified workspaces based on individual
make infrastructure accessible, organize additional train-
requirements, etc.)
ings (for example on literacy and numeracy), and provide X X X
transport and other technical support (physical rehabilita-
tion, assistive devices).
139 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).
140 
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa-
tions of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

106 107
14. Livelihoods Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

3. Implementation 4. Coordination

To address negative perceptions, make the community Assign an inclusion expert to the Food Security and Liveli-
more aware of the capacities of persons with disabilities X X hoods Cluster. He or she should assist sector partners to
X X
and the contributions that they make to the community. mainstream inclusion and support referrals across rele-
vant sectors.
Inform the families of persons with disabilities of the rights
and capacities of persons with disabilities, including their X X X 5. Monitoring and evaluation
right and capacity to work.
Involve OPDs and persons with disabilities in monitoring
Persuade and encourage employers, local leaders and humanitarian and protection indicators. Indicators should X
government bodies to respect the rights of persons with be disaggregated by sex, age and disability.
X X X
disabilities, including their right to have full access to
livelihoods. Ensure that beneficiary feedback mechanisms are acces-
X
sible and include persons with various types of disability.
Make sure that humanitarian actors understand that
persons with disabilities are individuals with a variety of Systematically ensure that livelihood programmes are
experience, knowledge and capacities. Make sure they accountable to persons with disabilities. Information,
X X X
are not stereotyped or placed in stereotypical roles. For dissemination modalities, and complaint and feedback
X X
instance, a woman with a hearing impairment may be able mechanisms should be accessible. Persons with disabil-
to do physically demanding work. ities should be able to participate in decision-making and
planning processes.
Work with financial service providers; assist them to adapt
X X
their products to the requirements of persons with disabilities. Identify good practices and initiatives that have success-
fully promoted the inclusion of persons with disabilities. X
Assist vocational or business skills training centres to make Document and disseminate these.
the curricula and courses they offer accessible to persons X X
with different types of disability.

In workplaces, provide tools that have been adapted for use


Tools and resources
X X
by persons with disabilities.
• Cash Learning Partnership, Minimum Stan- • FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific,
Consider adapting community infrastructures (such as dard for Market Analysis A handbook for training of disabled on rural
markets and training institutes) to make them more acces- X X enterprise development (2003)
sible. • EMMA, Emergency Market Mapping and Anal-
ysis (EMMA) Toolkit • ILO and FAO, Guidance on how to address
Teach project staff how to interact with and support decent rural employment in FAO country activ-
X X
persons with various types of disability. • Livelihood Centre ities: Second Edition (2010)

Develop outreach and community-based processes that • S EEP, Minimum Economic Recovery
can identify and connect with persons with disabilities who X Standards
are not ‘visible’.
• Sphere Handbook (2018)
Cooperate with OPDs and other actors that support persons
with disabilities to design and deliver inclusive livelihood • USAID, Cohort livelihoods and risk analysis
and economic security assessments. These should identify X X guidance
barriers to the delivery of assessments as well as barriers
to the implementation of programmes.

108 109
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

15 Health

15. Health
See also WASH, Food security and
nutrition, Education and Protection.
Introduction

By their nature, humanitarian disasters and conflicts Key legal instruments and other frameworks
harm health systems and the health of people whom
they affect. Apart from the direct effects of injuries • Convention on the Rights of Persons with
and trauma, they exacerbate public health concerns Disabilities
(including the incidence of malaria, cholera, malnu-
trition, non-communicable diseases, and problems
• Convention on the Rights of the Child
of sexual and reproductive health) because they • WHO, Emergency Response Framework
disrupt social protection systems as well as essen-
tial health services. For persons with disabilities, • Reproductive Health Sub-working Group of
many of whom access education and shelter and the ISDR/WHO Thematic Platform for Disas-
other services on referral from health services, crises ter Risk Management for Health, Policy Brief:
and disasters disrupt their access to care, worsen- Integrating Sexual and Reproductive Health
ing the position of those who are already excluded into Health Emergency and Disaster Risk
or marginalized. Management

Persons with disabilities have the right to access


• Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduc-
tion 2015-2030
all mainstream health services and to receive infor-
mation about their health conditions and treat-
ment. They also have the right to make decisions
about treatment (informed consent). Many medi- identified, they may not receive child development inter-
cal staff hold misperceptions about the capacity ventions and may fail to reach their potential.
and requirements of persons with disabilities. They
often assume they need disability-related services
alone; or they permit family members, medical staff Key terms
or other proxies to give consent on their behalf.
A health system is composed of all organizations,
The absence of health services or their disruption can people and actions whose primary interest is to
have grave consequences for persons with disabilities. promote, restore or maintain health.141 It focuses on
For example, if it is perceived that women with disabili- ways to influence the factors that determine health and
ties are asexual, they may be excluded from sexual and promotes activities that directly improve health. To this
reproductive health services, putting them at higher risk end, it delivers preventive, promotive, curative and reha-
of unwanted pregnancy or sexually transmitted infec- bilitative interventions through State and non-State
tions. If children with disabilities are not appropriately actors and services.142

WHO – Western Pacific Region, The WHO health system framework (2018).
141 

WHO, Monitoring the building blocks of health systems: a handbook of indicators and their measurement strategies (2010).
142 

111
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Diagram 10 | Barriers to access and inclusion in health143 Standards and guidelines Addressing barriers

HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS • Inter-Agency Standing Committee, IASC • Implement strategies to reduce stigma
WITH DISABILITIES IN HEALTH Guidelines on Mental Health and Psychoso- about disability. Make the community aware
cial Support in Emergency Settings (2007) of disability. Establish peer-support groups
that include persons with psychosocial and
IMPACT OF CRISIS • WHO, Emergency medical teams: minimum intellectual disabilities.
technical standards and recommendations
Insecurity, breakdown of social networks, destruction of infrastructure, for rehabilitation (2016) • To increase mutual understanding, counter
displacement, closure of services misconceptions and myths, and foster coop-
• WHO, Guidance Note on Disability and Emer- eration, encourage persons with disabilities
gency Risk Management for Health (2018) and health staff to dialogue, exchange ideas
and share their knowledge.
• Sphere Handbook (2018) 144

• Make health facilities accessible to persons


• WHO, Community-Based Rehabilitation with disabilities. Promote initiatives to trans-
!         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
Guidelines port persons with disabilities to health facil-
ities, widen entrances, improve signage, and
Environmental barriers: • HelpAge International, CBM, and Handicap generally facilitate movement.
• Inaccessible health facilities International, Humanitarian inclusion stan-
• Lack of accessible communication during consultations (diagnosis and treatment informa- dards for older people and people with disabil- • Communicate information on health in multi-
tion) and in health promotion and prevention activities ities (2018) ple accessible formats, taking into account the
• Inaccessible transportation and road infrastructure requirements of persons with hearing, visual,
• Informed consent procedures are not accessible intellectual or psychosocial disabilities.
• Unavailability of mobility devices or other assistive devices and technology Key elements – must do
Attitudinal barriers: • Address socioeconomic barriers to health,
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases such as lack of education and low income.
• Negative attitudes and discrimination against persons with disabilities by health workers
of humanitarian action when implementing health
• Health workers’ lack of awareness and knowledge about persons with disabilities and their
requirements programming for persons with disabilities.
Empowerment and capacity development
Institutional barriers:
• Lack of technical capacity to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities in Participation • Strengthen OPDs’ health programming
health capacity. Enable them to participate in
• National health emergency risk management is not inclusive of persons with disabilities
• Existing health system and infrastructures do not address the specific health
• Ensure that persons with disabilities, family designing, implementing and monitoring
members, and organizations of persons health services.
needs of persons with disabilities
with disabilities (OPDs) actively participate
• Lack of accountability in health system regarding referrals and disability-specific
services
in decision-making and in designing, imple- • Involve OPD staff, self-advocates with intel-
menting, monitoring and evaluating health lectual and psychosocial disabilities, mental
• Lack of disability data in Health Management Information Systems
programmes. health service users, family members, and
caregivers in trainings for health profession-
• In cooperation with persons with disabili- als on disability.
ties and OPDs, make health workers aware
of the rights of persons with disabilities, • Adopt informed consent procedures for
including the intersection of disability with medical and surgical decisions and data
gender, age, migration status, religion and sharing (including referrals) to enable
sexuality. persons with disabilities to make decisions
Risks faced by persons with disabilities for themselves.
Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health, exclusion, isolation

143 
For a list of barriers specific to health care, see WHO, Factsheet on disability and health. The Sphere Project, Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Humanitarian Response (2011).
144 

112 113
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Data collection and monitoring Recommended actions

• Determine what data are available on the crisis. Disaggregate the data by sex, age and Preparedness Response Recovery
number of persons with disabilities. Assess disability.
the data’s accuracy and identify gaps. Where
1. Assessment, analysis and planning
data are not available, use the 15 per cent • Create clear referral systems across differ-
global estimate.145 ent services. Document and monitor their
Document pre-disaster prevention and health needs. Consider
performance.
sexual and reproductive health, mental health, psychosocial
• Run health assessments, surveys and
support, communicable and non-communicable diseases and
surveillance tools to collect data on the • Run an intersectional analysis to understand injury care. Focus on providing access to excellent, affordable X
health of persons with disabilities. Do so power imbalances based on gender, age and
primary health services, universal health care, essential medi-
consistently, through all phases of the disability and how intersectionality affects
cines, and assistive devices for persons with disabilities, regard-
access to financial resources, mobility and
less of age and gender.
decision-making.
Map mainstream health and disability-targeted services.
Consider primary health care centres, acute and rehabilitation
Delivery of quality health services hospitals, early intervention services, community-based reha-
X X
bilitation programmes, mental health and psychosocial support
To be excellent, health services must provide equi- sound. In humanitarian settings, all persons should (MHPSS) services at community and hospital level, and suppli-
table access to essential medical products and have access to excellent health services, regard- ers and manufacturers of assistive devices.
technologies of assured quality; must be safe, effi- less of disability.
cient and cost-effective; and must be scientifically Map local OPDs, health-related peer-support groups, mental
health service users, self-advocates with disabilities, caregivers
X
and parents, and organizations that work on disability. Involve
them in all preparedness activities.

Develop the capacity of humanitarian health actors to include


X X
persons with disabilities in programming.
MAINSTREAMED TARGETED
Conduct accessibility audits of organizations, health facilities
Health facilities and programmes adopt univer- Health programmes accommodate the and services, and health products. Prepare action plans to X X X
sal design and are inclusive of and accessible individual requirements of persons with inform monitoring and evaluation.
to everyone, including persons with disabili- disabilities. For example, assistive devices With OPDs, review national emergency health policies and
ties. For example, health workers are trained in are provided, and medical products meet ensure they allocate funds to meet the health and well-being X X
disability and health care is people-centred. individual requirements. needs of persons with disabilities.

Assign a disability-inclusive health focal point or expert to the


The following guidance will support health actors persons and caregivers, when they access health health sector to provide technical guidance on programming
X X X
to identify and remove barriers faced by persons programmes in humanitarian settings. disability-inclusive health services and supporting cross-sec-
with disabilities, as well as their families, support toral referrals.

2. Resource mobilization

Allocate money and raise funds to ensure the continuity of


health services used by persons with disabilities, including X X X
specific services that are critical.

145 
WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).

114 115
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Mobilize professionals who understand and can address the 5. Monitoring and evaluation
health needs of persons with disabilities. Recruit experts in X
mainstreaming disabilities in health services. Ensure that feedback and complaints mechanisms are acces-
X
sible and include persons with disabilities.
Establish a database of disability-specific and mainstream
health actors and service providers who are in a position to X X Collect data on health; ensure data are disaggregated by sex,
facilitate an effective referral system. X X
age and disability.

3. Implementation Monitor and evaluate the accessibility and inclusiveness of


health facilities, programmes and services, to ensure that they
X X
Raise awareness among health staff and communities to address the needs and concerns of women, men, girls and boys
reduce stigma with respect to disability. Implement strategies with disabilities, at all ages.
X X X
to meet this objective, for example through communications
and outreach. When measuring the quality of health service delivery, include
criteria that measure inclusion and accessibility and compli- X X
Make sure that persons with disabilities can access all health ance with health standards. (See Resources below.)
facilities, including temporary ones. When health facilities are
X X
rebuilt or rehabilitated, make sure that engineers and architects
adopt universal design principles.
Tools and resources
Make health facilities fully accessible to persons with disabili-
ties. Consider entrances, restrooms, ease of movement within X X X • mhGAP Training Manuals (2017)
buildings, signage.
• WHO, OECD, World Bank, Delivering quality
Ensure that all information on health services, and information health services: A global imperative for univer-
issued by user-satisfaction and feedback mechanisms, is avail- X X sal health coverage (2018)
able in multiple accessible formats.

Ensure, after the emergency starts, that patient information


remains available and accessible for purposes of referral, move- X
ment and transfer, and follow-up.

4. Coordination

Include information on disability in health management infor-


mation systems. Consider health facility registers, the acces- X X
sibility status of the facility, health-related surveillance.

Establish coordination groups. Involve health stakeholders and


representatives of OPDs, including persons with intellectual and X X X
psychosocial disabilities.

Ensure that referral systems connect health care providers and


X
health actors with expertise in disability.

116 117
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Health workforce Preparedness Response Recovery


A well-performing health workforce is responsive, force that is fairly distributed, diverse, competent
Train health staff on the effects humanitarian disasters have on
respectful, fair and efficient. It works to achieve and productive, and sufficiently large to fulfil the
the health of persons with disabilities. (For example: persons
the best health outcomes possible, given available functions required.
with psychosocial disabilities have more serious symptoms;
resources and circumstances. This implies a work- X X
lack of medication makes it impossible to manage epilepsy,
diabetes, etc.; persons with spinal injuries cannot manage their
pressure sores if they are separated from support persons, etc.).
Recommended actions
Develop outreach and community-based care strategies, and
Preparedness Response Recovery home-based care, to enable health workers to reach persons X X
with disabilities who cannot travel or who live at a distance.
1. Assessment, analysis and planning Ensure that all feedback and complaint mechanisms are acces-
X X X
sible to persons with disabilities.
Conduct a needs assessment of the health workforce to deter-
mine its understanding both of disability and the importance 4. Coordination
X X X
of including persons with disabilities in health programming
and service delivery. Develop and field test referral pathways between the commu-
nity and hospitals and between health services and other X X
Identify shortcomings in the capacity and awareness of health
sectors and services.
staff, and in policy and guidance, with respect to inclusion and X X
disability. Create a database of health workers at all levels who have
X
disability training.
Map and regularly update the number and location of staff who
work with persons with disabilities (health and rehabilitation X X
5. Monitoring and evaluation
professionals, community workers, etc.).
Regularly monitor the knowledge and skills of health workers
2. Resource mobilization
with respect to persons with disabilities and their inclusion. X X X
Propose follow-up training.
Map resources. Include in the health workforce persons with
X X X
disabilities who have health skills and training. Evaluate the training on disability that is available to the health
X X
workforce.
Recruit professional staff who have expertise in responding
X
to the health needs of persons with disabilities.

Mobilize funds to strengthen the disability expertise of health


X X X Tools and resources
staff. Include communication skills and health examinations.

Include rehabilitation staff in emergency medical teams. • Global Health Workforce Alliance and others,
X Scaling up the community-based health work-
force for emergencies – a joint statement
Mobilize a range of health providers (including occupational (2011)
and speech therapists) to enable persons with disabilities to X X
obtain the services they require.
• Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank
3. Implementation
• WHO, Building a global health workforce for a
better response (2016)
Ensure all health programming and core trainings for health
professionals address disability awareness and the rights of X X
persons with disabilities.

118 119
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Health information management Tools and resources

A well-functioning health information management health status is produced, analysed, disseminated • H ealth  Cluster,  Knowledge Bank (See
system should ensure that information on health and used reliably and promptly. information and planning)
determinants, health system performance and
• Humanity & Inclusion, Using the Washing-
ton Group Questions in humanitarian action
Recommended actions (learning toolkit on disability data collection)
(2019)
Preparedness Response Recovery
• Humanity & Inclusion, Disability Data in
Humanitarian Action
1. Assessment, analysis and planning

Disaggregate national surveys and health surveillance by sex, age


and disability.
X Essential health services

Include disability-related data, disaggregated by sex and age, in Essential health services include lifesaving health specialized health services to ensure their survival
X
demographic and health surveys. services. Some persons with disabilities require and well-being.
rehabilitation or respiratory support or other
Map the availability of relevant health services, including physical
X
rehabilitation, occupational therapy and orthopaedic workshops.
Recommended actions
2. Resource mobilization

Develop, communicate and deliver trainings on disability-related Preparedness Response Recovery


data collection methodologies that have been tested in humanitarian
X X 1. Assessment, analysis and planning
contexts, such as the Washington Group Short Set of Disability Ques-
tions and the UNICEF-Washington Group Child Functioning Module.
Assess health workers’ skills and knowledge with respect to rehabil-
Train staff that collect data on health infrastructure to document itation of: (1) persons with disabilities; (2) persons with disabilities
X X
its accessibility to persons with disabilities. who have acquired new injuries;146 and (3) persons with new injuries.147 X X
Develop an action plan (training materials, resources) to address the
3. Implementation issues identified.

Design a health information management system that disaggre- Identify and assess the health needs of affected persons with disabil-
X X
gates data by sex, age and disability. ities. Consider health maintenance, mental health and psychosocial X X
support, and rehabilitation.
Design health registers for use in health facilities, and in outreach
X X
and home-based care, that collect data on sex, age and disability.
Map essential health needs of persons with disabilities. Include respi-
X X
Train health workers to collect data on sex, age and disability and ratory support, electrical power, medication and treatment.
X X X
to audit the accessibility of health facilities.
Identify barriers and risks that persons with disabilities face when
X X
4. Coordination they access essential health services.

Require reporting to include disability-specific indicators. 2. Resource mobilization


X X

Encourage donors to fund the restoration or supply of essential health


5. Monitoring and evaluation X X
services for persons with disabilities.

Require monitoring and evaluation tools to include disability-spe-


X X
cific indicators. WHO, Minimum Standards and Recommendations for Rehabilitation (2016).
146 

Ibid.
147 

120 121
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Communicable diseases
Preparedness Response Recovery
Regardless of their age or sex, persons with disabil- sanitation and health prevention programmes, and
3. Implementation ities are likely to be more susceptible to communi- may live in inaccessible shelters that endanger their
cable diseases during humanitarian crises, because health and lives.
Establish community-based health services to provide rehabilitation they are likely to lack access to safe water, adequate
X X
and outreach.

Restore essential health services and supplies that persons with


X Recommended actions
disabilities require to maintain their health and survive.
Preparedness Response Recovery
Set up a sound referral system and refer persons with disabilities to
health services that were identified during the preparedness stage. X X
These services should be appropriate and culturally sensitive. 1. Assessment, analysis and planning

Re-stock products and medicines in rehabilitation centres, health Together with OPDs and other stakeholders, identify persons with
X X
points and hospitals. Include assistive devices and essential medi- X X disabilities in the affected population.
cines, and mental as well as physical health facilities.
Identify barriers and risks that persons with disabilities face
Integrate agreed essential health needs of persons with disabilities when they access health prevention activities and communicable
X X X X
in health services. disease programmes. Include vaccination and access to safe water
programmes.
4. Coordination
2. Resource mobilization
Coordinate with the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Social Development,
Mobilize funds and human resources to organize outreach, commu-
OPDs and other relevant stakeholders. With them, agree what health X X
nity-based and home-based services, and health promotion and X X
services for persons with disabilities are essential.
disease prevention campaigns.
Work with OPDs, caregivers and local health service providers to deter-
3. Implementation
mine the pre-disaster/pre-crisis health needs of persons with disabilities X
in the affected area. Include rehabilitation.
Collect disease surveillance and household survey data disaggre-
X
gated by sex, age and disability.
5. Monitoring and evaluation
Involve persons with disabilities and OPDs in developing information,
Monitor the extent to which persons with disabilities have access to X X
education and communication materials.
all essential services. Include access to medication, assistive devices X X
and allied service providers. Communicate health promotion and disease prevention measures
in multiple accessible formats. Do the same with information and X X
education resources.

When designing cross-sectoral communicable disease prevention


Tools and resources
measures for at-risk populations, address the specific requirements X X
and concerns of persons with disabilities.
• Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank
4. Coordination

Coordinate with other sectors to ensure that persons with disabilities


have access to water, sanitation, and clean and safe shelter, and can X
meet other emergency requirements.

122 123
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

5. Monitoring and evaluation When screening children with disabilities in needs assessments and
health surveys, consider using the UNICEF-Washington Group Child
X X
Monitor the degree to which persons with disabilities have access to Functioning Module, or other standardized assessment tools that
X
promotion and prevention campaigns and activities. have been tested by humanitarian actors and stakeholders.

Identify barriers and risks that children with disabilities face when
X X
Tools and resources they access child health services.

• Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank 2. Resource mobilization

Plan, budget and implement training for health staff on the rights
Child health of children with disabilities. Include child development, and early X X X
detection of disability.
Failure to coordinate interventions for children across it impossible to reduce socioeconomic inequalities
health, education, protection and nutrition is a major that affect health.
threat to child health. It hinders fulfilment of children’s 3. Implementation
rights, limits their development potential, and makes Children with disabilities have the right to access all
child- and adolescent-related health services. Make health services and programmes accessible to children and
adolescents with disabilities, and their caregivers, by removing barri- X X
ers to their full inclusion.
Recommended actions
Involve girls and boys with disabilities, and their caregivers, in design-
X X
Preparedness Response Recovery ing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating health programmes.

1. Assessment, analysis and planning Integrate early detection of disability in relevant programmes. Include
X X X
school health, nutrition, maternal health and newborn health.
Obtain available data on the number of children with disabilities. X
Integrate health information and disability management in maternal
Map assessment tools commonly used with children, including in and child health programmes and services. Include immunization,
X X
early childhood. Adapt them to meet the requirements of children X X antenatal and postnatal care, nutrition, and sexual and reproductive
with disabilities and train staff to use them. health.

Map health service providers and their accessibility. Include profes- Integrate early identification and detection of disability in the work
sionals with expertise in paediatrics, nutrition, early intervention, early X X of community-based workers and community health practitioners.
X X X
childhood development and rehabilitation. Assist them to identify children with disabilities, including intellectual
and psychosocial disabilities, and refer them for early intervention.
Document the health and psychosocial and nutritional needs of chil-
dren with disabilities. (For example, a child with a disability who has X X Where child health programmes are delivered through schools, run
X X
lost parents or caregivers may also be malnourished or depressed.) outreach programmes for out-of-school children with disabilities.

Assess what training health workers need with respect to children Encourage parents and caregivers of children with disabilities to join
X X
with disabilities and their inclusion. parent support groups. Disseminate child health information and X X X
education through community health centres.

124 125
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Sexual and reproductive health and rights

Persons with disabilities are entitled to sexual and their specific requirements. Generally, the sexual
4. Coordination reproductive health, which is a component of the right and reproductive health of persons with disabilities
to health. Women, men, girls and boys with disabil- is a low priority for health stakeholders, due to the
Coordinate with other sectors to ensure that children with disabilities ities must have access to accessible sexual and misconception that persons with disabilities are not
X X
have access to assistance and protection. reproductive services and information that meets able to make free choices about their sexual lives.

Develop and implement referral systems for children with disabilities.


X X X
Include targeted services, such as occupational and speech therapy. Recommended actions

5. Monitoring and evaluation Preparedness Response Recovery

Include indicators about girls and boys with disabilities in moni- 1. Assessment, analysis and planning
toring tools. Report on the health outcomes for girls and boys with X X
disabilities. Map sexual and reproductive health services, and supplies, for
persons with disabilities, and their accessibility. Include maternal
and newborn care, contraception and emergency contraception,
X X
adolescent sexual and reproductive health, prevention and response
to gender-based violence (GBV), sexually transmitted infections,
Tools and resources and HIV/AIDS services.

• Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank Determine the degree to which persons with disabilities have access
to health facilities, services and supplies. Plan how to address gaps.
X X
• WHO, Nurturing care for early childhood devel- (For example, use large print or Braille to make information more
opment: A framework for helping children accessible.) Reduce wait times.
survive and thrive to transform health and
human potential To address the sexual and reproductive health requirements of
persons with disabilities, including persons with intellectual disabil-
ities, organize outreach services and delivery of supplies to persons
X
with disabilities who are isolated in their homes. Make sure outreach
programmes include accurate information on sexual and reproduc-
tive health.

Assess the protection concerns of women, men, girls and boys with
disabilities. Consider how easily they can access sexual and repro-
ductive health information and services. Address safety risks that X X X
persons with disabilities identify.

Identify barriers and risks that persons with disabilities face


when they access sexual and reproductive health services and X X
programmes.

2. Resource mobilization

Allocate funds to train health staff on the cumulative effect on sexu-


X X
ality of the intersectionality of age, gender and disability.

Recruit persons with disabilities who have expertise in and experi-


X X
ence of sexual and reproductive health.

126 127
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Include disability modules in all sexual and reproductive health train- 4. Coordination
ings for staff. Make training available to service providers, support
X X X
staff, community outreach workers, mobilizers, and staff who work Coordinate with other sectors (such as protection, and food and
on gender-based violence (GBV) and HIV. nutrition) to ensure a quality sexual and reproductive health system X X
and an efficient referral system to support it.
3. Implementation
Coordinate with the health and protection sectors, the sexual and
Integrate disability inclusion in all sexual and reproductive health reproductive health working group, and gender-based violence
prevention and response services (information, services and Areas of Responsibility to ensure that persons with disabilities are X
supplies). Do so for adolescent sexual and reproductive health; protected and have access to all sexual and reproductive health
X X
maternal and newborn health; contraceptive services; services to information, services and supplies.
prevent and respond to GBV; and services to prevent and address
sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS. Encourage national and community-based OPDs to participate
X X X
actively in sexual and reproductive health working groups.
In collaboration with OPDs and disability-focused organizations,
develop public information materials on sexual and reproductive X X X 5. Monitoring and evaluation
health and disseminate them in a range of accessible formats.
Collect and analyse data on sexual and reproductive health services
Ensure that informed consent procedures are respected, including and their delivery. Disaggregate information by sex, age and disabil- X X
when persons with disabilities are asked to take decisions. Proce- ity.
dures should comply with the Convention on the Rights of Persons X X
with Disabilities (CRPD). Train staff and providers in how to commu- Monitor the accessibility of sexual and reproductive health services. X X X
nicate with people who have a range of disabilities.148
Use monitoring and reporting processes to promote reflection and
Ensure all health facilities are physically accessible, and that sexual accountability. Review the extent to which persons with disabilities X X
and reproductive health personnel are sensitized to disability inclu- have access to and use sexual and reproductive health services.
X X X
sion and equipped to provide information in multiple accessible
formats. Include adolescents with disabilities.

Encourage and mobilize persons with disabilities and OPDs to under- Tools and resources
take evidence-based advocacy on sexual and reproductive health X X
issues, including HIV, gender and rights. • Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank • Sphere Project, Minimum Initial Service
Package for Reproductive Health (in Sphere
Create a steering committee to advocate for the adoption of a sexual
and reproductive health model that is disability-inclusive. Members
• Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproductive Handbook)
Health in Crises (IAWG), Reproductive health
should include persons with disabilities, OPD members and repre- X
sentatives of INGOs, the protection and health sectors, and national
is an essential component of humanitarian • UNFPA, A Deeper Silence: The Unheard Expe-
response, pp. 1–2 riences of Women with Disabilities – Sexual
authorities. and Reproductive Health and Violence against
Reach out to women, girls and youth with disabilities during commu- • Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproduc- Women in Kiribati, Solomon Islands and
X tive Health in Crises, On Reproductive Health Tonga (2013)
nity information sessions on sexual and reproductive health.
in Crises
Include sexual and reproductive health information, services and • Women’s Refugee Commission, Reports on
supplies for persons with disabilities in school health programmes, X X • Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproduc- disabilities and sexual reproductive health
nutrition programmes and other relevant programmes. tive Health in Crises, Training Partnership
Initiative

• Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproductive


Health in Crises, Inter-Agency Field Manual on
148 
 omen’s Refugee Commission, “I see that it is possible”: Building Capacity for Disability Inclusion for GBV Practitioners Toolkit, Tool 9: Informed
W Reproductive Health in Emergencies (2018)
Consent Process with Adult Survivors with Disabilities.

128 129
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Injury care
Preparedness Response Recovery
Individuals with and without disabilities are at risk of disabilities are seldom considered. (See WHO, Mini-
Integrate rehabilitation services in all mass casualty and disaster
sustaining injuries and trauma during humanitarian mum Technical Standards and Recommendations
management plans, including in treatment protocols and care path-
situations. Standard procedures are implemented for Rehabilitation.) X
ways for common life-changing injuries (loss of vision, hearing or
to treat each type of injury; however, pre-existing
speech, spinal cord injuries, amputation).

Conduct accessibility audits of trauma centres and rehabilitation


Recommended actions services. Consider physical accessibility, and the accessibility of
X X
communications and information, and service. Design and implement
Preparedness Response Recovery action plans to address barriers; follow up.

Train trauma and rehabilitation staff in needs assessment. Include


1. Assessment, analysis and planning the wider protection of people with injuries, and their referral to other X
services and sectors (such as shelter, protection and WASH).
Map trauma centres and rehabilitation services in affected areas.
Include assistive devices, prostheses and orthotics, and mental health X Regularly monitor and evaluate the action plan to ensure that trauma
X
and psychosocial support (MHPSS) services. centres and rehabilitation services remain accessible.

Map local OPDs and other related services and programmes in Provide affordable, locally appropriate, sustainable or free assistive
X X
affected areas. Assess their availability and accessibility. devices, prostheses and orthotics that comply with international stan- X
dards (for example, WHO wheelchair standards).
Map suppliers of assistive devices, and the availability of specific
X
items and materials that persons with disabilities require. Provide medical and surgical treatment and rehabilitation, including
MHPSS services, for people who sustain injuries during the disaster X
Examine available data on new injuries and the likely need for long-
X or crisis.
term specific health care services.
Ensure that persons with disabilities who are not injured can access
Understand patterns of injury among persons with disabilities, their X
X X services they require. Restore pre-emergency services.
trajectory, response and recovery, and access to services.
To reach more isolated individuals with disabilities, develop commu-
Identify barriers and risks persons with disabilities face when they
X X nity-based services, and provide outreach and follow-up. Include
access services and programmes that provide injury care. X X
persons with disabilities living in refugee or internally displaced
persons camps, besieged areas and rural areas.
2. Resource mobilization
Establish one-stop shops in primary health care clinics so that persons
Mobilize rehabilitation professionals who understand inclusion and with disabilities do not have to go to multiple locations to receive X
X
are trained to work with persons with disabilities. services they require.
Raise funds to improve rehabilitation services in the short and long
X X 4. Coordination
term.

Ensure that rehabilitation programme budgets include the cost of Coordinate with other sectors to develop and implement a referral
X X X
removing barriers that impede access by persons with disabilities. pathway to other services and to protection.

3. Implementation 5. Monitoring and evaluation

Train rehabilitation professionals who work in areas vulnerable to Ensure rehabilitation and trauma centres disaggregate data by sex,
X X X
hazards. Include acute trauma care, MHPSS and disaster manage- X age and disability.
ment.
Report on the number of persons with disabilities injured during the
X X
crisis.

130 131
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Tools and resources People with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities residential institutions, or who are homeless. They support. Humanitarian crises are an opportunity to
frequently experience discrimination and exclusion. should act to develop and strengthen communi- invest effort and resources to construct an equipped,
• CBM, Handicap International, ICRC, WHO, Their human rights may be violated by segregation, ty-based services and structures, to both prevent comprehensive community-based system that is
Minimum Technical Standards and Recom- confinement, restraints on their autonomy, or threats institutionalization and end coercive treatment, aligned with international human rights standards.
mendations for Rehabilitation in Emergency to their physical and mental integrity. Emergency violence, abuse and other violations of human rights
(2016) responses should include action to redress rights in such places. These forms of mistreatment dispro- In practice, it is frequently difficult during an emer-
abuses and inequities that were present before the portionately affect people with mental health condi- gency to respond adequately to the needs of people
• Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank crisis occurred, as well as to create opportunities tions and psychosocial and intellectual disabilities with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities. This
for people with psychosocial disabilities to enjoy with higher support requirements. In the course is particularly true in countries that have not rati-
• WHO, ISPO, USAID, Guidelines on the provi- their rights fully, including their rights to health and of providing community care, support and living fied the Convention on the Rights of Persons with
sion of manual wheelchairs in less resourced to live in dignity. arrangements for this population, the protection Disabilities. Where mental health systems are not
settings (2008) sector should also promote independent and effec- community-based or human rights-oriented, addi-
tive monitoring of all institutions, including prisons, tional guidance should be provided on core aspects
• WHO, Global cooperation on assistive tech- Psychosocial disability in these guidelines in which persons are detained, and secure appropri- of care and support, at all levels, including in the
nology (GATE) results from barriers to social participation and ate housing for those who are homeless. community and in families. For instance, capaci-
access to rights linked to mental health or cogni- ty-building programmes should focus attention on
tive conditions or disturbance in behaviour that is When an emergency occurs, the mental health and establishing procedures that secure and effectively
Mental health and psychosocial support perceived as socially unacceptable. The term is psychosocial support system of the region affected safeguard informed consent (to treatment, for exam-
usually reserved for people with more persistent is likely to be disrupted. In many instances, it may ple), supported decision-making and non-coercive
Activities that protect and promote mental health or recurrent functional impairment, who are not be equipped to provide community-based and interventions.
and psychosocial well-being need to be realized confronted with systematic exclusion and partic- human rights-oriented mental health care and
and implemented across all sectors, including in ipation barriers. The term is less often used for
health, education, protection and nutrition. those with temporary mental health conditions
who recover quickly, sometimes in response to Recommended actions
MHPSS interventions. During humanitarian emer-
In humanitarian emergencies, violence, fear and gencies, distress leading to functional impair- All actions should be concerted with persons with OPDs, in close collaboration with MHPSS experts
uncertainty can create chaos and deplete commu- ment is often transient, and it is important not disabilities (including persons with psychosocial and providers in MHPSS technical working groups.
nity resources. As a result, people experience stress to label such response as a medical condition and intellectual disabilities), their families, and
reactions that may impair daily functioning and or disability.
social interaction.149 In many instances, these reac-
tions are transient or people are able to adapt to
the sudden changes. With appropriate social and MHPSS should not focus only on persons with Preparedness Response Recovery
emotional support, many people will overcome psychosocial and intellectual disabilities. It should
these difficult experiences. To achieve this outcome, focus on all community members, including persons
1. Assessment, analysis, and planning
however, it is necessary to draw on and strengthen with disabilities who experience different levels of
the resources in families and communities that distress in humanitarian contexts. However, these Conduct a needs assessment, using adapted tools for rapid participa-
foster resilience and mutual support. In protracted guidelines recognize that persons with psychoso- tory approaches. Include persons with psychosocial and intellectual X X
humanitarian crises, lack of hope and prolonged and cial and intellectual disabilities face specific forms disabilities. Integrate MHPSS components in other assessments.
accumulated stress can lead to persistent distress, of structural discrimination, are particularly at risk
increasing the incidence or severity of mental health of human rights violations, and are in addition mark- Map and assess available MHPSS resources and staff. Include
conditions, including severe depression and suicide. edly underrepresented in decision-making fora. services and staff competencies (of specialists and non-special-
Some people, particularly individuals who have been The protection sector should look closely at this ists) across sectors. Consider experts and providers from MHPSS X X X
particularly severely affected, or who have pre-ex- subgroup in the population and take steps to make technical working groups, OPDs, and persons with psychosocial and
isting mental health and psychosocial needs, or sure that its members can participate socially and intellectual disabilities.
who face discrimination and exclusion, may need in all matters that are of concern to them.
focused additional support delivered by trained Using the WHO Quality Rights toolkit, map and assess all health facil-
non-specialists or mental health and psychosocial The health and protection sectors should work ities and residential care institutions in the affected area, as well as X X X
health (MHPSS) specialists. closely to protect, support and care for people living traditional or informal service providers for people with disabilities.
in prisons, social welfare institutions and other

149 
IFRC, Guidelines on mental health and psychosocial support (2018).

132 133
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Based on assessment findings, plan a MHPSS response and MHPSS Build the capacities of humanitarian staff. Train them in how to interact
X X X
programmes. Ensure these address the requirements of persons with X X X in emergency settings with people who have psychosocial disabilities.
disabilities.
Integrate evidence-based MHPSS interventions in the primary health
X X X
Develop or update national mental health policies, strategies, plans care system.
and legislation. Ensure the national MHPSS system is communi- X X
ty-based and aligned with human rights. Make community-based and human rights-oriented MHPSS services
available and accessible to persons with disabilities at all levels of X X X
Develop institutional emergency preparedness and response plans, care. Make use of task sharing.
including evacuation plans. Evacuation plans should safeguard family X
and community links. Make evidence-based psychological interventions available and
X X X
accessible to persons with disabilities at all levels of care.150
2. Resource mobilization
Implement the WHO Quality Rights tools to protect the lives and dignity
of persons who are institutionalized; to strengthen human rights
Mobilize dedicated budgets for community-based and human X X X
surveillance; to put institutional evacuation plans in place; and to
rights-oriented MHPSS responses and services that are inclusive of X X
safeguard family and community links in the course of evacuations.
persons with disabilities.
Develop protocols to prevent coercive treatment, including forced
Allocate budgets and resources to deploy peer supporters (including
institutionalization, forced medication, forced electroconvulsive treat- X X X
from other regions) to assist people with psychosocial disabilities in X X X
ment, and physical and chemical restraints.
affected areas.
Take steps to ensure that destroyed or inactive care centres that
Ensure that cross-sectoral appeals, proposals and concept notes
X X formerly institutionalized persons with disabilities are not reopened
integrate MHPSS considerations. X
or restored in the recovery phase. Advocate for a comprehensive
Establish, empower or mobilize peer-support groups, advocacy groups community-based and human rights-oriented MHPSS system.
X X X
led by persons with disabilities, and social support.
4. Coordination
Mobilize resources to support outreach activities for individuals with
disabilities who are institutionalized, live in confinement or receive Coordinate with active MHPSS Technical Working Groups in the field
traditional religious healing at home. These budgets should cover X X to ensure that persons with disabilities are included in the MHPSS X X
the costs of: essential services; monitoring; interventions to prevent response.
human rights violations; and integration in the community.
Foster intersectoral collaboration to ensure that MHPSS programmes
Mobilize influential community members to challenge norms and atti- involve (at minimum) OPDs and actors from health, community-based X X
tudes that perpetuate or legitimize violations of the rights of persons X X X protection, child protection and education.
with disabilities.
Establish a sound community-based MHPSS system, based on a
3. Implementation human rights approach, that delivers excellent services, supported
X X
by a strong and effective cross-sectoral referral system that includes
Raise awareness in the community of disability and the rights of community resources, traditional healers and religious centres.
persons with disabilities, including persons with psychosocial and X X X
Where persons with disabilities have been institutionalized, identify
intellectual disabilities.
an agency to take responsibility for promoting de-institutionaliza-
Build the capacity of specialists and non-specialists, including OPD tion. Seek to transfer people from institutions to community-based X X
representatives, volunteers and peer supporters. Training should accommodation that provides appropriate support, while ensuring
include the human rights framework; multidisciplinary approaches X X X their continued care and protection.
in MHPSS; community-based care; task sharing; and psychological
first aid.

For example, Problem Management Plus, Interpersonal Therapy for Depression.


150 

134 135
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Non-communicable diseases

5. Monitoring and evaluation Non-communicable diseases (NCDs), or chronic 1. Treat acute complications that require
diseases, tend to be of long duration and result from special attention in emergency settings, and
Establish a monitoring mechanism for MHPSS programmes and a combination of genetic, physiological, environ- introduce additional arrangements including
services, based on the IASC MHPSS common framework for Moni- X X X mental and behavioural factors. The main types are a referral mechanism.
toring and Evaluation. cardiovascular diseases (such as heart attacks and
strokes), cancers, chronic respiratory diseases (such 2. Continue ongoing treatment (by means of
Include persons with disabilities, including persons with intellectual and as obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma), medicines, technologies or appliances).
psychosocial disabilities, in monitoring MHPSS programmes and services. X X X diabetes, and mental and neurological conditions
Involve also their families, support persons and caregivers, and OPDs. (such as dementia).151 Persons with disabilities 3. Make adjustments to accommodate
are sometimes at higher risk of NCDs because, for declines in ability to cope.
Systematically monitor the human rights of persons with disabilities,
X X X example, they may be less mobile, live in overprotec-
using the WHO Quality Rights tools.
tive environments, or eat unbalanced diets. 4. Coordinate care provision and follow-up
Design or adapt information management systems and facility regis- across a range of providers and settings.
ters. Ensure that information collected is disaggregated by sex, age X According to WHO, to manage NCDs during emer-
and disability. gencies, it is necessary to:

Recommended actions
Tools and resources
Preparedness Response Recovery
• IASC, Guidelines on Mental Health and Psycho- • Sphere, Sphere Handbook (2018)
social Support in Emergency Settings (2007) 1. Assessment, analysis and planning
• UNHCR, Community-based Protection and
• IASC, Guidelines on Mental Health and Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Include data disaggregated by sex, age and disability in the rapid
Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings: (2017) risk assessment tool. Document the pre-crisis burden of disease X
What should Humanitarian Health Actors and available care.
know? (2011) • UNHCR, Operational Guidance for Mental
Health and Psychosocial Support Program- Work with the community to identify persons with disabilities who
• IASC, Guidelines on Mental Health and ming in Refugee Operations (2013) have NCDs and who are isolated due to distance or stigma and X X
Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings: discrimination.
What should Camp Coordinators and Camp • UN Human Rights Council, Report of the
Manager Actors Know? (2014) Special Rapporteur on the right of every- Involve OPDs in identifying barriers that persons with disabilities face
one to the enjoyment of the highest attain- when they access essential medicines they require. Use the provi-
X X
• IASC, Inter-Agency Referral Guidance Note able standard of physical and mental health, sions for acute treatment of chronic conditions in the Interagency
for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support A/HRC/35/21, 28 March 2017 Emergency Health Kit.
in Emergency Settings (2017)
• UNICEF, Operational guidelines on commu- Map and review protocols, guidelines and tools for managing NCDs
X X
• IASC, MHPSS common framework for Moni- nity-based mental health and psychosocial and ensure they take account of and include persons with disabilities.
toring and Evaluation (2017) support in humanitarian settings: Three-tiered
support for children and families (2018, field Map OPDs and related service providers for referral and support. X X
• IASC, Who is Where, When, doing What in test version)
Mental Health and Psychosocial Support? Ensure that intervention principles fully include persons with disabil-
(2014, a 4W Tool) • WHO and UNHCR, Assessing mental health ities. Train health staff who work on integrated NCD management in X X X
and psychosocial need and resources (2012) emergencies to understand and implement the principles.
• IASC Reference Group on Mental Health and
Psychosocial Support, Mental Health and • WHO, QualityRights Toolkit (2012)
Psychosocial Support in Humanitarian Emer-
gencies: What Should Protection Programme • WHO, QualityRights Training Materials (2019)  ecognizing the importance of mental health and psychosocial support services, a separate section looks at barriers that persons with mental
R
151 

Managers Know? (2010) health conditions and those in psychosocial distress face. See Mental health and psychosocial support.

136 137
15. Health Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery


Tools and resources

2. Resource mobilization
• Health Cluster, Knowledge Bank

Support the development of NCD-inclusive budgeting. Advocate for


• UN Interagency Task Force on NCDs and
WHO, Noncommunicable Diseases in Emer-
funds to cover the cost of making NCD services in emergencies avail- X X gencies (2016)
able and accessible to persons with disabilities.

3. Implementation
• WHO, Emergency medical team guidelines
• WHO, Integration of NCD care in emergency
Disseminate widely the Interagency Emergency Health Kit provision response and preparedness (2018)
for the acute treatment of chronic conditions. Make sure it is available X
to persons with disabilities.
• WHO, Package of Essential Noncommunica-
ble (PEN) Disease Intervention for Primary
Design and disseminate health promotion and patient education
Health Care in Low-Resource Settings (2010)
materials in multiple accessible formats (including oral, print, sign X X
language, easy-to-read/plain language, large print, etc.).
• Americares, Non-Communicable Diseases in
Humanitarian Emergencies (2018)
Ensure that medicines, protocols and referrals for NCDs take account
of the specific requirements of persons with disabilities (for example, X
treatments for epilepsy).

Work with OPDs and disability-focused organizations to remove


barriers that impede the effective and prompt delivery of NCD inter- X X
ventions to persons with disabilities.

4. Coordination

Ensure meaningful participation of persons with disabilities in NCD


X X
coordination mechanisms.

Ensure that health services coordinate intersectoral referrals for


X
persons with disabilities who have NCD-related impairments.

5. Monitoring and evaluation

Include disability-specific indicators in NCD monitoring tools and


X
report on them.

Monitor the inclusion of persons with disabilities in NCD program-


X X X
ming and service delivery.

Include NCD-specific indicators in rapid assessment tools, including


Multi-Cluster/Sector Initial Rapid Assessment and other routine moni- X X
toring and evaluation tools.

138 139
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

16 Protection

16. Protection
 ee Data and information manage-
S
ment, Camp coordination and camp
management, Education, Food secu-
Introduction
rity and nutrition, Livelihoods, Health,
Shelter and settlements, and WASH.
The IASC defines protection as “all activities aimed
at obtaining full respect for the rights of the individ- Protection activities can be:
ual in accordance with the letter and the spirit of rele-
vant bodies of law (i.e., international human rights • Responsive (aiming to prevent or stop ongo-
law, international humanitarian law and international ing rights violations).
refugee law)”.152 Protection is at the centre of human-
itarian action.153 In addition, a protection perspective • Remedial (aiming to provide redress for past
recognizes that affected populations have capac- violations).
ities. They are rights holders who can claim their
rights; they are not passive recipients of aid. • Environmental (building the legal and insti-
tutional frameworks, capacity and aware-
The Sphere Handbook sets out four protection princi- ness required to promote respect for human
ples that represent the basic elements of protection rights).155
in a humanitarian response:154

• Enhance the safety, dignity and rights of Adopt a cross-cutting approach to protection
people, and avoid exposing them to harm. and community-based protection

• Ensure people have access to assistance A protection intervention is stronger if it involves


according to their requirements, without affected communities in responses to the threats
discrimination. they face. Community-based protection focuses
on putting affected populations at the centre of a
• Assist people to recover from the physical response and strengthening local resources and
and psychological effects of threatened capacity. It works with affected populations as part-
or actual violence, coercion or deliberate ners, rather than relying solely on external actors.
deprivation. This approach should be adopted by all protec-
tion sub-sectors because it helps them to identify
• Help people claim their rights. protection risks and develop solutions to them that
can be implemented successfully at local level.

IASC, Human Rights and Natural Disasters: Operational Guidelines and Field Manual on Human Rights Protection in Situations of Natural Disasters (2008).
152 

See also IASC Protection Policy.


153 
IASC Principals’ Statement, The Centrality of Protection in Humanitarian Action (2013).
154 
Sphere Handbook (2018).
155 
IASC, Human Rights and Natural Disasters: Operational Guidelines and Field Manual on Human Rights Protection in Situations of Natural Disasters (2008).

141
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

These activities are implemented through protection ‘Do no harm’ is an injunction to humanitarian orga- Diagram 11 | Barriers to access and inclusion in protection
mainstreaming, protection integration or specific or nizations to act in ways that do not generate unin-
HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS
specialized protection programmes. In humanitarian tended negative consequences. They should avoid
contexts, persons with disabilities often face height- causing harm and minimize any harms that they may WITH DISABILITIES IN PROTECTION
ened protection risks as well as multiple barriers to inadvertently cause because they are present and
reporting rights violations and accessing protection provide assistance. Humanitarian actors need to be
services. It is therefore essential to put them at the aware of and take steps to minimize harms associ- IMPACT OF CRISIS
centre when designing, implementing and monitor- ated with their presence and activity.160 Insecurity, breakdown of social networks, destruction of infrastructure,
ing protection activities. In addition, family members, displacement, abandonment, closure of services
caregivers and support persons play a vital role in the
lives of many persons with disabilities. It is import- Key legal instruments and other
ant to consider them when analysing protection and frameworks161
protection risks, because they are often part of the
solution and sometimes part of the risk. • Convention on the Rights of Persons with
Disabilities
The Global Protection Cluster includes several areas
• Convention on the Rights of the Child !         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
of responsibility (AOR): child protection; protection
related to sexual and gender-based violence; hous- • Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention
ing, land and property; and mine action. This section Environmental barriers:
reflects the Global Protection Cluster structure. • Convention on Cluster Munitions • Inaccessible protection services due to distance and inaccessible infrastructure and
roads networks
• Convention on Certain Conventional Weap- • Inaccessible reporting procedures (e.g. for GBV and PSEA)
ons, Protocols II and V162
Key terms • Lack of outreach or accessible information regarding protection of rights, access to
• Convention on Eliminating All Forms of justice and reparations
Protection mainstreaming, sometimes called Discrimination Against Women
‘safe programming’, is the “process of incorporat- Attitudinal barriers:
ing protection principles and promoting meaning- • Convention on the Elimination of All Forms • Negative attitudes and stigma against persons with disabilities and their rights
of Racial Discrimination • Lack of awareness about legal capacity of persons with disabilities to participate in
ful access, participation, accountability, safety and
dignity in humanitarian aid”.156 • International Covenant on Economic, Social decision-making and provide informed consent
and Cultural Rights
Protection integration involves “incorporating Institutional barriers:
protection objectives into the programming of other • International Covenant on Civil and Political • Limited technical and financial capacity to promote inclusion of persons with disabilities
sector-specific responses (i.e., beyond the protection Rights and protection of their rights
sector response) to achieve protection outcomes”.157 • Justice mechanisms are not accessible to persons with disabilities
• IASC Policy on Protection in Humanitarian • Inaccessible registration systems resulting in denial of legal status for persons with
Action (2016) disabilities
Specific protection activities or specialized protec-
tion activities, sometimes called ‘stand-alone inter- • Lack of accurate data on persons with disabilities
ventions’, are specific activities that help people stay
safe, recover from harm, and secure access to their
rights.158 Humanitarian actors with specific protec-
tion expertise undertake these activities.159

Risks faced by persons with disabilities


156 
Global Protection Cluster, Protection Mainstreaming Training Package (2014).
157 
IASC, Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016). Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health,
Oxfam and Global Protection Cluster, Protection: What is it anyway? (2016).
exclusion, isolation, denial of rights
158 

159 
IASC, Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016).
160 
UNICEF, Humanitarian Principles (2004). See also CDA, The Do No Harm Handbook.
161 
See also IASC, Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action, Annex I: Normative Framework.
162
 IASC, Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016).

142 143
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Standards and guidelines protection mechanisms (camp leadership • Map local and national OPDs, assess their health, education) and ensure cross-sectoral
mechanisms as well as women’s groups capacity to work in protection mainstream- coordination.
• Sphere Handbook (2018). See the section on and youth groups), taking into account all ing, and provide training and support where
protection forms of disability as well as age, gender and required. Involve them in the work of protec- • Monitor violations of the rights of persons
diversity. Make concerted efforts to promote tion coordination mechanisms. with disabilities.
• Global Protection Cluster. See tools and underrepresented groups, such as persons
guidelines with intellectual and psychosocial disabili- • Involve persons with disabilities and their
ties, indigenous persons, women and girls. representative organizations in all commu- Protection
• H
 elp Age, CBM, Handicap International, nity mobilization and outreach activities. Build
Humanitarian inclusion standards for older their capacity to identify and refer persons Protection-related risks and impacts
people and people with disabilities (2018). Addressing barriers at risk of violence or abuse and take appro-
See the section on protection priate steps to protect rights and address • Persons with disabilities may experience
• Identify and monitor barriers that impede violations.164 targeted violence and abuse because of their
• Minimum Standards for Child Protection in persons with disabilities from accessing disability.166 In a recent survey of persons
Humanitarian Action protection and take steps to make protection with disabilities in humanitarian contexts,
systems and services accessible to them. Data collection and monitoring 27 per cent of respondents reported that
• IASC, Guidelines on Integrating Gender- Provide outreach and make other reason- they had experienced physical, psychologi-
Based Violence Interventions in Humanitar- able accommodations to reach persons • Collect and analyse protection data on cal or other forms of abuse, including forms
ian Actions (2015) with disabilities who are unable to leave their persons with disabilities, disaggregated of sexual abuse.167 Targeted violence against
homes. by sex, age and disability. Do so systemat- persons with disabilities may include phys-
• IASC, Gender-based Violence - Standard Oper- ically across the humanitarian programme ical attacks, killings,168 denial of food and
ating Procedures (2008) • Communicate all protection-related informa- cycle in all protection information manage- medicine, harassment, emotional abuse,
tion in multiple accessible formats, taking ment systems, including the Gender-Based profound neglect, shackling, and confine-
• Inter-Agency Gender-Based Violence Case into account persons with hearing, visual, Violence Information Management System, ment. These abuses are often perpetrated
Management Guidelines (2017) intellectual and psychosocial disabilities. Child Protection Information Management by persons known to them.169 Frequently,
System and national reporting databases. targeted violence against persons with
• IASC and Global Protection Cluster, Caring for • Review sectoral policies, guidelines and disabilities is not reported or monitored, and
Survivors of Sexual Violence (2010) tools to ensure that they clearly affirm the • Collect data and information on barriers to few programmes identify or respond to such
right of persons with disabilities to access claiming rights and barriers that impede violations.
and inclusion. access to protection services.
Key elements – must do • Persons with disabilities are more likely to
• E nsure that data ethics and protection prin- experience violations if they are in institu-
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases of Empowerment and capacity development ciples (including confidentiality, provision of tions. Numerous reports have documented
humanitarian action when implementing protection information, informed consent, security) are severe violations in institutions of the rights
programming for persons with disabilities. • Ensure that, when persons with disabilities respected whenever data on persons with of adults and children with disabilities, partic-
need to take personal decisions, including disabilities are collected and used.165 ularly persons with psychosocial disabil-
persons with intellectual and psychosocial ities.170 The violations in question include
Participation disabilities, procedures always require their • Share information on the cross-sectoral inhuman and degrading treatment, unsani-
informed consent.163 needs of persons with disabilities in inter- tary conditions, neglect, verbal, sexual and
• E nsure that persons with disabilities and agency coordination mechanisms (WASH, physical abuse, involuntary medication, and
organizations of persons with disabilities • Through training and building awareness, restraint.171
(OPDs) actively participate in identifying make protection actors more conscious of
protection risks and barriers to accessing the rights of persons with disabilities, and See IASC, Policy on Protection in humanitarian action (2016), p. 2.
164 

protection. the specific protection risks they face. Equip See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa-
165 

them with practical tools and approaches tions of Violence (2018), Chapter 6, Managing data and information for protection outcomes, pp. 106–148; and CRPD, Article 22(2).

• Ensure that persons with disabilities are fairly that strengthen their protection and See WHO, Prevalence and risk of violence against adults with disabilities: a systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies (2012);
166 

and WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).


represented in formal and informal protection resilience.
Handicap International, Disability in Humanitarian Context – Views from affected people and field organisations (2015).
167 

mechanisms including community-based See UNICEF, Violence Against Disabled Children: Summary Report (2005), p. 6.
168 

Ibid.
169 

163 
See ICRC, Professional Standards for Protection Work Carried Out by Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors in Armed Conflict and Other Situa- WHO, Promoting Rights and Community Living for Children with Psychosocial Disabilities (2015).
170 

tions of Violence (2018). Human Rights Watch, They Stay There Until They Die (2018); Human Rights Watch, Chained Like Prisoners (2015).
171 

144 145
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

• Persons with disabilities are more likely than • Persons with disabilities who are unable to Preparedness Response Recovery
others to lack personal documents (birth tell their story may also be at higher risk. This
certificate, marriage certificate, travel docu- problem arises particularly for persons with
ments). This may happen for a number of intellectual or psychosocial disabilities and 2. Resource mobilization
reasons, including failure to register their persons who have difficulty communicat-
Ensure that all proposals or concept notes identify and analyse the
birth, or denial of their legal capacity (a form ing. During security screening processes,
protection risks and the capacities of women, men, girls and boys
of discrimination). for example, persons with disabilities may X X
with disabilities. Ensure that interventions promote their protection
not be able to respond accurately to securi-
and participation.
ty-related questions.
Establish inclusive budgeting processes. Allocate resources to
X X
improve accessibility and inclusion.

3. Implementation

MAINSTREAMED TARGETED Develop outreach activities, including community-based outreach,


X X X
to reach individuals who are isolated in their homes or institutions.
Protection programmes are designed and Protection programmes accommodate the
Include case studies and discussions of disability in core trainings
adapted to ensure that they are inclusive of individual needs of persons with disabilities
for protection staff, community outreach staff, protection focal X X
and accessible to everyone, including persons by providing reasonable accommodations. For
points and protection committees.
with disabilities. For example, they ensure example, extension programmes reach out to
access to protection programmes, and train persons with disabilities who are isolated or Communicate information on protection, and about complaint and
protection staff on disability. distant and support their participation in deci- feedback mechanisms, in multiple and accessible formats. Take steps
X X X
to include individuals who are isolated in their homes or in institutions
sions that are relevant to them.
or who rely on support persons for communication.

Take steps to assist persons with disabilities to obtain personal


The following guidance will support protection support persons and caregivers, when they access documentation. Publicize the importance of marriage and birth
actors to identify and remove barriers faced by protection programmes in humanitarian settings. registration; organize mobile registration for refugees and other
persons with disabilities, as well as their families, X X X
displaced populations, including persons with disabilities; make
legal case management available to persons with disabilities who
lack access to civil documentation.
Recommended actions
Ensure that family tracing and reunification services identify and
respect the wishes of persons with disabilities who have become X X
Preparedness Response Recovery
separated.

1. Assessment, analysis and planning Include residents of institutions in protection-related activities and
ensure they have access to all the information that is provided to X X X
Ensure that protection assessments consult persons with disabil- other members of the affected population.
ities. Include them in focus group discussions and key informant
interviews. Assessments should identify groups at heightened risk Monitor and report on violations of the rights of persons with
of protection violations and disability-related discrimination, and X X X disabilities. Include targeted violence, forced medical treatment,
persons who may face barriers to accessing protection services. disability-related discrimination and barriers to accessing protec-
X X X
Include persons with disabilities who are isolated or confined to tion services. Follow cases up and remove barriers that impede or
their homes or communities. deter persons with disabilities from accessing protection services
or reporting violations.
Ensure that planning considers the risks that persons with disabili-
ties face, the barriers that impede them from accessing protection Design and implement protection interventions for persons with
services, and specific actions that may be required to remove those X X X disabilities that assessments have found to be at risk. (Assessments X X X
barriers. Ask persons with disabilities to help define protection sector need to be gender and age sensitive.)
priorities.

146 147
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Gender-based violence
Preparedness Response Recovery
Gender-based violence (GBV) is “any harmful act ities experience multiple, intersecting, and some-
Work with OPDs and influential community members (traditional and
that is perpetrated against a person’s will and that is times mutually reinforcing forms of discrimination
religious leaders, educators, local media) to challenge norms and
X X X based on socially ascribed (i.e., gender) differences and oppression, adding to the risk of violence, includ-
attitudes towards persons with disabilities that perpetuate discrim-
between males and females. It includes acts that ing GBV, that they may face. Women and girls with
ination and other violations of human rights.
inflict physical, sexual or mental harm or suffering, disabilities disproportionately experience GBV; they
Provide technical assistance to the Ministry of Justice and other threats of such acts, coercion and other depriva- are victims of domestic violence twice as frequently
relevant ministries to strengthen the national legal and policy frame- tions of liberty. These acts can occur in public or in as other women. Because of the discrimination and
X X X
work. Make sure persons with disabilities, especially women and private.”173 Women, girls and transwomen are dispro- stigma associated with both gender and disability,
children, are protected from violence. portionately affected by GBV due to the systemic this violence also takes unique forms. For example,
inequality between males and females that exists women and girls with disabilities are more likely to
4. Coordination in all societies. According to estimates of the World be subjected to forced medical treatment, including
Health Organization, approximately one in every three forced sterilization and other reproductive health
Include disability and persons with disabilities as a standing agenda women experiences sexual or physical violence, very procedures, without their consent.
X X
item in protection coordination meetings. often at the hands of her intimate partner.174 The term
‘gender-based violence’ is also increasingly used Risks associated with GBV during crises and displace-
Engage persons with disabilities and OPDs in protection coordina-
by some actors to highlight the gendered dimen- ment
tion meetings and provide reasonable accommodations to enable X X sions of certain forms of violence against men and
them to do so meaningfully.
boys, particularly some forms of sexual violence • Women and girls with disabilities, and partic-
committed with the explicit purpose of reinforcing ularly women and girls with psychosocial,
5. Monitoring and evaluation
inequitable gender norms of masculinity and femi- hearing and intellectual disabilities, are at
ninity. Examples include sexual violence committed higher risk of sexual violence and other forms
Document and report progress on the achievement of protection
X X in armed conflicts with the aim of emasculating or of GBV. Repeated and regular rape by multi-
outcomes that reduce risks to affected persons.172
feminizing the enemy. This violence against males ple perpetrators is the most common form
is based on socially constructed ideas of what it of GBV reported.
means to be a man and to exercise male power. It is
Tools and resources used by men (and in rare cases by women) to cause • Women with disabilities who have been in
harm to other males.175 Finally, lesbian, gay, bisexual, exploitative relationships or have engaged
• Global Protection Cluster website • OHCHR, Monitoring the Convention on the transgender and intersex persons may also experi- in transactional sex frequently experience
Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Guidance ence GBV, because they are perceived by others to sexual exploitation. Associated risk factors
• H umanitarian inclusion standards for older for Human Rights Monitors (2010) be “defying gender norms”.176 include extreme poverty and unmet needs
people and people with disabilities (2018) for assistance.178
• Oxfam and Global Protection Cluster, Protec- In any emergency, certain groups of individuals in
• IASC, Operational Guidelines on the Protec- tion: What is it anyway? (2016) affected populations are more vulnerable to GBV. • Sexual violence against men and boys with
tion of Persons in Situations of Natural Disas- These individuals often hold less power in society, intellectual disabilities has been reported in
ters (2011) • U NHCR, Understanding Community-Based are more dependent on others for survival, and are several contexts. Risk factors include race,
Protection (2013) less visible in the community or otherwise margin- ethnicity and gender, underlining the inter-
• International Committee of the Red Cross, alized. When other factors, such as age, disabil- section of disability with other dimensions
Professional Standards for Protection Work • UNHCR, Age, Gender and Diversity Policy ity, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion or of identity.179
(2018) (2018, revised) ethnicity intersect with gender-based discrimina-
tion, the risk of GBV is likely to rise.177 In humanitarian • Girls with disabilities are at risk of child
contexts, women, men, girls and boys with disabil- marriage, especially in protracted refugee

Human Rights Watch, Chained Like Prisoners (2015).


173 

IASC, Guidelines for Integrating Gender-Based Violence Interventions in Humanitarian Action: Reducing Risk, promoting resilience and aiding
174 

recovery (2015).
Ibid, p. 5.
175 

Ibid.
176 

Ibid.
177 

Reported in Burundi and Ethiopia.


178 

172 
IASC, Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016). Reported in Burundi, Jordan and Lebanon.
179 

148 149
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

contexts. This risk arises from the intersec- or want to negotiate safe sexual relationships. These
Preparedness Response Recovery
tion of several risk factors, including socio- forms of harassment or discrimination reduce their
economic stress, gender inequality, age and access to services and exacerbate stigma, discrim-
Ensure that planning addresses the gender and disability-specific
disability.180 ination, and harmful attitudes and norms; often, in
requirements of persons with disabilities, as well as the risks and
addition, they increase the impunity of perpetrators. X X X
violations of human rights that they experience. Invite persons with
Female caregivers may experience harassment
disabilities to help define GBV sector priorities.
when they try to access services or assistance for The following guidance will assist humanitarian
their husband or for a male head-of-household with actors who work on GBV to identify and address
2. Resource mobilization
a disability. Adolescent girls may be removed from barriers faced by persons with disabilities, as well as
school to assist with caregiving needs in the house- their families, support persons and caregivers, when Develop proposals that address the GBV risks of women, men, girls
hold.181 Members of the community, the authorities they try to access GBV prevention mechanisms or X X X
and boys with disabilities.
or humanitarian actors may not listen to or believe respond to GBV in humanitarian settings.
women and girls with disabilities who report violence Secure financing and prepare inclusive budgets that allocate
X X
resources to improve accessibility and inclusion.

Recommended actions 3. Implementation

Recruit persons with disabilities as staff, volunteers and community


Preparedness Response Recovery X X X
mobilizers. Take steps to achieve gender balance in GBV activities.185

1. Assessment, analysis and planning Integrate and mainstream content about persons with disabilities
in core GBV training packages. Add case studies and discussions
X X
Ensure that persons with disabilities are included in community of disability to practitioner training and community awareness-rais-
consultations on GBV. Consultations should be age- and gender-ap- ing materials.186
propriate. Employ participatory methods to identify barriers to access X X
and take steps to make GBV activities and services accessible to Train local OPDs, in particular women-led OPDs, in how to safely
X X X
persons with disabilities.182 identify and refer GBV survivors.

Assess the attitudes and assumptions to disability inclusion of GBV Strengthen national policies and protocols, including standard oper-
X X ating procedures, case management systems and referral systems.
programme staff and service providers.183
Ensure they adopt a survivor-centred approach and provide respon- X X X
Map local OPDs. Identify who they represent and the degree to which sible, compassionate and confidential care to GBV survivors with
they have the capacity to work on safe identification and referral of disabilities.
X X
GBV survivors to appropriate services.184 Take steps to fill gaps in
capacity. Establish safe, accessible and confidential complaint mechanisms.
These should comply with protection from sexual exploitation and X X X
abuse (PSEA) standards.187

180 
Women’s Refugee Commission and UNICEF, Disability Inclusion in Child Protection and Gender-Based Violence Programs in Lebanon (2018).
181 
Reported in Jordan.
182 
 omen’s Refugee Commission and International Rescue Committee, Building capacity for disability inclusion in gender-based violence program-
W
ming in humanitarian settings. A toolkit for GBV practitioners (2005). Guidance Note 1 states that humanitarian and other actors who work on GBV
should hold community consultations on GBV risks. 15–20 per cent of community members involved in designing, monitoring and evaluating GBV
programmes should be persons with disabilities, in line with international standards for safe data collection on sexual violence in humanitarian Ibid. Guidance Note 4 notes that research has shown that women with disabilities in humanitarian settings are often underrepresented in com-
185 

contexts. This implies that 1–2 persons with disabilities from each age- and gender-appropriate group, and in addition persons with a range of dis- munity leadership structures. Recruiting women with disabilities as community mobilizers and social workers draws attention to the concerns of
abilities, should participate. Concurrently, it may be appropriate to interview some individuals. Interviews can be held at a location of the interview- this group and simultaneously increases respect for the skills and capacities of persons with disabilities among both humanitarian staff and in the
ee’s choice. Steps should be taken to identify and mitigate risks. community (WRC/IRC 2015).
183 
Ibid. Guidance Note 2 states that humanitarian and other actors who work on GBV may believe that GBV prevention and response services are not  omen’s Refugee Commission and International Rescue Committee, Building capacity for disability inclusion in gender-based violence program-
W
186 

relevant to or appropriate for persons with disabilities, or fear ‘doing harm’ if they include them in activities. GBV case workers may incorrectly as- ming in humanitarian settings. A toolkit for GBV practitioners. (2005). Guidance Note 5 argues that persons with disabilities and their caregivers
sume that survivors with intellectual disabilities do not have the capacity to make their own decisions, may defer to caregivers on what support and should be included in core GBV training packages, which should include case studies and examples centred on women, children and youth with
referral is appropriate, or may not adopt a survivor-centred approach. All GBV staff should be trained to consider their attitudes and assumptions disabilities. Over time, GBV staff should increasingly recognize that responding to the needs of persons with disabilities is a core part of their work
about persons with disabilities and hold open conversation about working with persons with disabilities. See Other Tools and Resources. and acquire relevant skills to do this work. (See the section on other tools and resources.)
184 
Ibid. Guidance Note 3 notes that local organizations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) are familiar with disability-friendly service providers, and Ibid. Guidance Note 8 makes the point that NGOs, international organizations and the UN system have a shared responsibility to eradicate sexual
187 

this knowledge can be used to inform and improve standard operating procedures and referral systems. As the first contact point for survivors with exploitation and abuse by their personnel. All actors operating in a humanitarian response, including those who work on GBV, must ensure that
disabilities, OPDs may need training in the principles of safe identification and referral. Seek out OPDs that are in contact with marginalized groups affected populations can report violations by personnel in a safe, accessible, and confidential manner. See UN Doc. 3ST/SGB/2003/13, 9 Oct 2003;
of persons with disabilities, including persons with intellectual disabilities and adolescent girls with disabilities, who may be at highest risk of GBV. for more information, see PSEA website.

150 151
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery • UNFPA, Minimum Standards for Prevention under the guise of treatment to modify behaviour,
and Response to Gender-based Violence in forced sterilization of girls with disabilities, or
Emergencies (2015) enforced abortion.194
Ensure that engineers and architects adopt universal design princi-
ples when women’s centres, health clinics, safe houses and trans- X X X
portation systems are constructed.188 • WHO, UNHCR and UNFPA, Clinical Manage- In line with the definition in Article 1 of the Conven-
ment of Rape Survivors (2004) tion on the Rights of the Child (CRC), a child is defined
Facilitate the participation of women and girls with disabilities in as a person under 18 years of age.
peace negotiations and peace-building, in line with international X • WRC and ChildFund, GBV Against Children
commitments.189 and Youth with Disabilities (2016) The CRC sets out four principles on the rights of the
child, which also apply in humanitarian action:
4. Coordination • WRC and IRC, Building capacity for disability
inclusion in gender-based violence program- • Survival and development. Humanitarian
Include disability and persons with disabilities as a standing agenda ming in humanitarian settings (2015) workers must consider how an emergency
X X
item in GBV coordination meetings. and the response to it affect the development
• WRC and UNICEF, Guidance on Disability of children.
5. Monitoring and evaluation Inclusion for GBV Partners in Lebanon: Case
management of survivors and at-risk women, • Non-discrimination. Humanitarian workers
Monitor how many persons with disabilities (disaggregated by sex children and youth with disabilities (2018) must address patterns of discrimination and
X
and age) attend GBV activities.190 power in the response.

Data information management systems, such as the Gender-Based


Violence Information Management System, should be disaggregated
Child protection • Child participation. Humanitarian workers
must enable children to meaningfully partic-
by sex, age and disability, in line with safe and ethical practices for the
X X During humanitarian crises, children are more ipate in all stages of humanitarian prepared-
collection and dissemination of GBV data. This will make it possible
exposed to violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation. ness and response.
to determine whether particular gender and age groups of persons
Their protection may be weakened as families are put
with disabilities are excluded.
under additional strain191 and community networks • Best interests of the child. The best interests
break down. The impact on children with disabilities of the child must be a primary consideration
can be especially marked, because they are subject to in all actions concerning children.195
Tools and resources stigma and discrimination and may have less access
to coping mechanisms. As a result, they are at higher Child protection-related risks and impacts
• GBV Area of Responsibility Working Group, • IASC, Gender Handbook for Humanitarian risk of rights violations. According to the former Child
Handbook for Coordinating Gender-based Action (2018) Protection Working Group, “exclusion fundamentally • In many countries, children with disabilities
Violence Interventions in Humanitarian affects the development of a child’s full potential… are frequently placed in institutions,196 where
Settings (2010) • IASC, Guidelines for Integrating Gender-based Excluded children are more vulnerable to violence, they are at risk of abuse, exploitation and
Violence Interventions in Humanitarian Action abuse, exploitation and neglect. Humanitarian crises neglect. Such facilities often have low stan-
• G BV Area of Responsibility (AoR), Handbook (2015) and responses can make cycles of exclusion worse dards of care and lack monitoring. Perpetra-
for Coordinating GBV in Emergencies (2019) or can offer opportunities for change.”192 tors of violence and abuse are rarely held to
• Inter-agency Gender-based Violence Case account.197
• GBV Area of Responsibility (AoR), GBV Mini- Management Guidelines (2017) Studies indicate that children with disabilities are
mum Standards on Prevention and Response three to four times more likely to be survivors of • Placement in residential facilities also
to GBV in Emergencies (2019, in publication) violence than children without disabilities.193 Further, increases the risk of trafficking of children
some forms of violence are specific to children with with disabilities. Studies have found that girls
188 
Ibid. Guidance Note 6. ‘Universal design’ refers to “the design of products, environments, programmes and services to be usable by all people, to disabilities. Examples include violence administered with disabilities are at risk of being trafficked
the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design”. Ensuring that buildings and facilities are accessible consumes
approximately 1 per cent of construction costs. It is more cost-effective than retrofitting buildings and facilities at a later stage.
Child Protection Working Group, Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action (2019).
191 
189 
 his aligns with UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, which notes the inordinate impact of war and violent conflict
T
Ibid.
192 
on women and girls and the crucial role that women play in conflict prevention, conflict resolution, peace-making and peace-building. The resolution
urges all actors to increase the participation of women and incorporate gender perspectives in all United Nations peace and security efforts. See Hughes K. et al., Prevalence and risk of violence against adults with disabilities: a systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies, in
193 

United States Institute of Peace, ‘What is UNSCR 1325?’ The Lancet, 2012, doi:10.1016/S0410-6736(11)61851-5.
190 
 omen’s Refugee Commission and International Rescue Committee, Building capacity for disability inclusion in gender-based violence program-
W UNICEF, State of the World’s Children: Children with disabilities (2013).
194 

ming in humanitarian settings. A toolkit for GBV practitioners (2005). Guidance Note 7 argues that it is critical to monitor the number of persons Child Protection Working Group, Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action (2019).
195 

with disabilities who use GBV services and programmes in order to understand whether programmes are reaching those who need them most. At See Lumos, Children in Institutions: the Global Picture (2017).
196 

least 15 per cent of participants in any GBV activity should be persons with disabilities; this ratio is not always met. (WRC/IRC 2015) African Child Policy Forum, The African Report on Violence against Children (2014).
197 

152 153
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

because their impairments are presumed to information that is essential for family trac-
Preparedness Response Recovery
limit their chances of escape.198 ing and reunification. Unaccompanied chil-
dren with disabilities may be excluded from
Involve children with disabilities and their families in identifying
• In sub-Saharan societies, myths that body traditional systems of care if local families
barriers that impede access to child protection interventions and
parts of persons with albinism have magical do not accept them. X X X
child-friendly spaces. Invite them to suggest how barriers can be
powers have led to attacks and mutilation,
removed and access improved.
primarily of children with albinism.199 • Girls with disabilities are at risk of gender-
based violence,202 including rape, sexual Make sure that teams appointed to run child protection assess-
• Children with disabilities are particularly likely exploitation and abuse.203 This in turn may ments and plan programmes are gender-balanced; ensure that the
X X
not to be registered at birth. This increases expose them to HIV and severe neglect.204 representation of persons with disabilities on those teams is also
their exposure to risks, including child Although research on this issue is limited, gender-balanced.
marriage and statelessness, and can block girls with disabilities are also at higher risk
their access to education, health care and of child and forced marriage. Ensure that planning addresses disability-specific requirements
other basic services.200 and risks. Involve persons with disabilities in setting child protec- X X X
• Children with disabilities may be engaged in tion priorities.
• C hildren with disabilities who have become hazardous child labour including the worst
separated from caregivers are especially forms of child labour, such as prostitution 2. Resource mobilization
endangered. Family members may have been and begging.
the only persons to know how to care for a Ensure that all proposals or concept notes consider and analyse
child protection risks and the capacities of girls and boys with
child’s specific physical requirements or how • Children with disabilities, especially those disabilities. Ensure that interventions address the protection and
X X
to communicate with a child.201 Children with with intellectual disabilities, may be more
disabilities may be unable to communicate likely to be recruited into armed groups. promote the participation of girls and boys with disabilities.

Secure financing. Establish an inclusive budgeting system that allo-


X X
cates resources to promote accessibility and inclusion.
The following guidance will support humanitarian as well as their families, support persons and care-
actors working in child protection to identify and givers, when they try to access child protection 3. Implementation
remove barriers faced by persons with disabilities, programmes in humanitarian settings.
Disaggregate data by disability in the Child Protection Informa-
tion Management System and all data collection tools. (Use the X X
Recommended actions UNICEF-Washington Group Child Functioning Module.)

Increase the capacity of staff and volunteers to understand and


Preparedness Response Recovery X X
apply a rights-based approach to disability.

1. Assessment, analysis and planning Give training and support to foster carers and interim caregivers
X X X
on the needs of children with disabilities.
Include girls and boys with disabilities in age-appropriate assessments
X X Train all child protection staff in disability. Integrate case studies
and consultations, including Child Protection Rapid Assessments.
and discussions of violence, exploitation and abuse of children
Make sure that children with disabilities participate in child protection with disabilities in core trainings. Include social workers, commu- X X
X X
decisions that concern them; ensure the procedures are confidential. nity outreach workers, education staff, health workers, protection
focal points, and committees.

Choose locations for child protection activities that are physically


198 
Leonard Cheshire Disability, Still left behind: pathways to inclusive education for girls with disabilities (2017).
accessible; where this is not possible, make necessary adjustments X X X
199 
Report of the Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism, A/HRC/34/59, 10 January 2017, para. 29. and provide reasonable accommodations.
200 
UNHCR, Need to Know: Guidance on Working with Persons with Disabilities in Forced Displacement (2019). See also Violence Against Women with
Disabilities Working Group, Forgotten Sisters - A Report on Violence against Women with Disabilities: An Overview of Its Nature, Scope, Causes and Raise awareness of the rights of children with disabilities. Discuss
Consequences (2012). these rights with children (with and without disabilities), with their
201 
UNICEF, State of the World’s Children: Children with disabilities (2013). X X X
families, and with community leaders, religious leaders, traditional
202 
Ibid.
healers, education and health staff, and the wider community.
203 
Women’s Refugee Commission, Gender-based Violence among Displaced Women and Girls with Disabilities (2012).
204 
UNICEF, Violence against Disabled Children: Summary report (2005).

154 155
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

Identify the safety concerns of children with disabilities, such as 4. Coordination


bullying or risk of injury, and physical or sexual abuse. Take steps X X
to remove or mitigate these risks. Include children with disabilities as a standing agenda item in the
X X
Child Protection Coordination Group.
Include adolescents and youth with disabilities in activities that
help build their resilience. Foster leadership and strengthen peer
X X X 5. Monitoring and evaluation
networks. Consider recreational activities, sports, cultural activities,
education, and life skills.205 Integrate child protection data in household-level monitoring tools;
Identify mentors with disabilities. Encourage mentors to use their disaggregate the data by sex, age and disability status. Encourage
leadership, skills and capacities to counter negative attitudes to monitoring teams to adopt data collection tools tested in human- X
X X itarian contexts, such as the UNICEF/Washington Group Child
disability. Consider introducing a buddy system for adolescents
and youth with and without disabilities. Functioning Module.

Promote access to birth registration for all children, including chil-


X X
dren with disabilities.
Tools and resources
Identify children living in residential facilities, including children
who have been separated and abandoned when communities flee.
X X
• Alliance for Child Protection in Humanitarian • International Committee of the Red Cross,
Where it is in their best interest, include them in family tracing and Action, Field Handbook on Unaccompanied Inter-Agency Guiding Principles on Unaccom-
reunification. and Separated Children (2017) panied and Separated Children (2004)

Consider the requirements of unaccompanied and separated chil-


X • Better Care Network • UNICEF, Including children with disabilities in
dren with disabilities who are in respite or alternative care. humanitarian action
Ensure that any actions to prevent and respond to the worst forms • Child Protection in Crisis Learning Network
of child labour include children with disabilities.
X X • UNICEF, Children With Disabilities In Situa-
• C hild Protection Working Group, Minimum tions of Armed Conflict (2018)
Ensure case management systems are inclusive. Map their Standards for Child Protection in Humanitar-
accessibility. Train case workers in how to work with children with ian Action (2019) • Women’s Refugee Commission and Child-
disabilities. (For example, give them practical skills in accessible X X fund, Gender-Based Violence Against Children
communication; make them aware of the rights of children with • C hild Protection Working Group, Inter Agency and Youth with Disabilities: A Toolkit for Child
disabilities and the risks they face.) Guidelines for Case Management and Child Protection Actors (2016)
Protection (2014)
Use mobile outreach teams to reach children with disabilities
who cannot travel to registration sites or child-friendly spaces.
X X • GBV Responders’ Network, Caring for Child
Ensure they visit children in residential facilities, including deten- Survivors
tion centres.

Work with communities to include children with disabilities and • Global Protection Cluster, Child Protection
X X X Working Group
their parents in community-based child protection mechanisms.

Provide support to enable families and caregivers of children with


X X X
disabilities to access assistance.

Ensure that monitoring and reporting mechanisms, including the


Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism on Grave Violations, report X X
violations of the human rights of children with disabilities.

205 
Child Protection Working Group, Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action (2019).

156 157
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Housing, land and property they live, either by direct discrimination or de • The cost of housing can disproportionately
facto removal of choice. Women are deprived affect persons with disabilities, because they
Individuals affected by humanitarian emergencies tion of land, and ongoing grievances over land and of effective choice, for instance, if they lack often face additional expenses (for health-
increasingly live in urban areas, informal settle- property.209 access to transport and other services, lack care, for example) as well as barriers that
ments and collective centres, rather than in camps information, or live in extreme poverty.215 prevent them from accessing employment.218
or planned settlements. Humanitarian actors need HLP-related risks and impacts
to consider the challenges and opportunities that • Some persons with disabilities are placed • Higher rates of poverty and discrimination
this evolution presents for displaced persons with • S ome persons with disabilities face multi- involuntarily in institutions or are unable may force persons with disabilities into
disabilities.206 ple forms of discrimination with regard to to leave the institutions in which they have slums and informal settlements.219
housing. Displaced persons with disabilities been placed. Both situations deprive them
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights recog- may face discrimination due to their disabil- of their right to choose independently where • Homelessness disproportionately affects
nized in 1948 that adequate housing is part of the ity as well as racism and xenophobia; and they live. This risk is particularly common for persons with disabilities. In some cases,
right to an adequate standard of living. Article 25(1) may simultaneously lose vital coping mech- persons with intellectual and psychosocial this occurs when persons with disabilities
states that “everyone has the right to a standard anisms and support structures during flight. disabilities.216 are de-institutionalized but not supported
of living adequate for the health and well-being of Others are unable to claim access to housing adequately to live in the community. Poverty
himself and his family, including food, clothing, hous- because they have lost essential documen- • Forced institutionalization often occurs as and discrimination are other causes.220
ing, and medical care and necessary social services”. tation,210 or cannot challenge discrimina- an indirect result of other failures to respect
The International Covenant on Economic, Social and tory rental practices because they lack legal the right to adequate housing. In some • If their legal capacity is not recognized,
Cultural Rights (1966) also recognized the right to status.211 As a result, displaced persons with societies, for example, the State does not persons with disabilities may not be allowed
adequate housing, which is understood to include disabilities may lack accommodation, may provide persons with disabilities necessary to enter into agreements to lease or own prop-
legal security of tenure; the availability of services, be unable to rent adequate accommoda- forms of support to enable them to live in erty. In addition, they are particularly likely to
materials, facilities and infrastructure; affordabil- tion, may be forced to live in insecure and the community; in others, housing is simply experience discrimination when property is
ity; habitability; accessibility; location; and cultural unsafe conditions, and may be vulnerable to unaffordable.217 inherited.
adequacy.207 eviction.212
The following guidance will assist humanitarian actors working in HLP to identify and remove barriers faced
The right to property is understood as the right to • Multiple and intersecting discrimination is by persons with disabilities, as well as their families, support persons and caregivers, when they try to access
enjoy one’s house, land and other property posses- experienced by women with disabilities, who HLP programmes in humanitarian settings.
sions without interference or discrimination. In a face additional gender-related barriers that
humanitarian context, realization of this right may impede them from exercising HLP rights. In
involve safeguarding property and possessions that particular, widowed, abandoned or divorced Recommended actions
have been left behind by people fleeing conflict or women may only be able to own property
natural hazard from looting, destruction, or arbitrary or acquire access to property through male Preparedness Response Recovery
or illegal appropriation, occupation or use.208 relatives.213 Women with disabilities who are
forced to live in insecure housing are also
1. Assessment, analysis and planning
Disputes over housing, land and property (HLP) are at higher risk of violence, including sexual
common in humanitarian contexts due to secondary violence.214
Through participatory analysis, identify barriers that prevent
occupation, loss of ownership documents, illegal or
persons with disabilities from realizing their HLP rights. Disag-
forced sales, insecurity of tenure, unequal distribu- • Persons with disabilities are often denied gregate the data by sex and age. Include persons living in insti-
X X
the right to choose where and with whom
tutions.
 ee for example, Norwegian Refugee Council, Guidance Note on HLP Issues in Informal Settlements and Collective Centres in Northern Syria
S Work with OPDs and legal experts to clarify the forms of discrim-
206 

(2017). The NRC recognizes that limited guidance is available on housing, land and property issues in informal settlements and collective centres,
which are common in Syria.
ination that persons with disabilities face. Identify legal avenues X X X
207 
 N Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, General Comment No. 4: The Right to Adequate Housing (Art. 11(1) of the Covenant), 13
U of recourse.
December 1991.
208 
IASC, Protection in Natural Disasters.
209 
Norwegian Refugee Council and IFRC, The Importance of Addressing Housing, Land and Property (HLP) Challenges in Humanitarian Response (2016). UN Habitat, The Right to Adequate Housing for Persons with Disabilities Living in Cities: Towards Inclusive Cities (2015).
215 

210 
Ibid. Ibid.
216 

211 
UN Habitat and OHCHR, The Right to Adequate Housing. Human rights factsheet no. 21 (rev. 1) (2009).  N Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing as a Component of the Right to an Adequate Standard of Living, Adequate Housing as a Component
U
217 

212 
Norwegian Refugee Council and IFRC, The Importance of Addressing Housing, Land and Property (HLP) Challenges in Humanitarian Response (2016). of the Right to an Adequate Standard of Living, and the Right to Non-Discrimination in this Context, A/72/251 72b, 12 July 2017.
213 
See, for example, Norwegian Refugee Council, Displaced Women’s Rights to Housing, Land and Property (2018). UN Habitat, The Right to Adequate Housing for Persons with Disabilities Living in Cities: Towards Inclusive Cities (2015).
218 

214 
 ee, for example Norwegian Refugee Council and IFRC, The Importance of Addressing Housing, Land and Property (HLP) Challenges in Humanitar-
S UN Habitat and OHCHR, The Right to Adequate Housing. Human rights factsheet n. 21 (rev. 1) (2009).
219 

ian Response (2016). UN Habitat, The Right to Adequate Housing for Persons with Disabilities Living in Cities: Towards Inclusive Cities (2015).
220 

158 159
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

With OPDs, map local services (such as in-home and community Include persons with disabilities in any processes that assist
support services) that enable and assist persons with disabilities X X X refugees and internally displaced persons to obtain access to X X
to live independently. HLP documentation.

Ensure that planning covers the requirements of persons with Connect displaced persons, OPDs and civil society organizations,
X X
disabilities, and the risks they encounter. Involve persons with X X X including tenants’ associations, that advocate for HLP rights.
disabilities in setting priorities for housing, land and property.
Ensure that monitoring and reporting mechanisms report viola-
X X X
2. Resource mobilization tions of the HLP rights of persons with disabilities.

Ensure that proposals and concept notes that examine legal 4. Coordination
X X
capacity and literacy include persons with disabilities.
Include persons with disabilities as a standing agenda item in
X X
3. Implementation HLP coordination meetings.

Engage persons with disabilities and OPDs in HLP coordination


Support networks that call for persons with disabilities to have
meetings. Provide reasonable accommodations to facilitate their X X
equal access to HLP rights in humanitarian situations. Encour-
meaningful participation.
age campaigns that affirm HLP rights and campaigns that affirm X X
the principles of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with
5. Monitoring and evaluation
Disabilities (CRPD).

Integrate case studies and discussions of disability in core train- Integrate data on persons with disabilities in household-level
X
ings for staff involved in HLP programmes. Include community X X X monitoring tools.
outreach staff, protection focal points, and committees.

When allocating safe emergency shelter, consider giving prior-


ity to groups that are particularly at risk, including persons with X Tools and resources
disabilities.
• FAO and others, Housing and Property Resti-
Improve accessibility to housing, housing services and infra- tution for Refugees and Displaced Persons in
structure, including transport. (See the section on Shelter and X X Pinheiro Principles (2007)
settlements for more guidance.)

Work with OPDs to advocate for restitution of property without • IASC, Framework for Durable Solutions for
Internally Displaced Persons (2010)
discrimination. The right of persons with disabilities to own
X X
property should be recognized; they should also enjoy access
to information and legal aid. • Norwegian Refugee Council and IFRC, The
Importance of Addressing Housing, Land and
Ensure that persons with disabilities can make restitution claims Property (HLP) Challenges in Humanitarian
and that procedures for restitution are accessible. Provide infor- Response (2016)
X X
mation and training to improve legal literacy; assist people with
disabilities who need support to complete claims procedures.221 • Norwegian Refugee Council, Technical Guide-
lines for Addressing HLP Issues in Informal
Ensure that, when refugees and internally displaced persons are Settlements/Camps and Collective Centres
asked to report on their use, ownership, residence in, and posses- in Northern Syria (2017)
sion of land and property in their country of origin, persons with X X
disabilities are asked the same questions. (Disaggregate the
data by sex and age.)

221 
 he Pinheiro Principles set out international standards on housing, land and property restitution for refugees and internally displaced persons. See
T
Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions, The Pinheiro Principles.

160 161
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Mine action development contexts are key principles. with disabilities may be excluded from devel-
Article 5(2a) of the Convention on Clus- opment and livelihood opportunities associ-
Mine action activities aim to reduce the risks and ter Munitions states that victim assistance ated with mine clearance.
harms to civilians and humanitarian workers of programmes must not discriminate against
explosive hazards.222 or between cluster munition victims, persons The following guidance will support humanitarian actors working in mine action to identify and remove barri-
with disabilities, and persons who have been ers faced by persons with disabilities, as well as their families, support persons and caregivers, when they
The five pillars of mine action are: injured or have acquired impairments through try to access mine action programmes in humanitarian settings.
other causes.223
• Clearance of mines and explosive remnants
of war (ERW). This is the process of using • Stockpile destruction refers to a broad range Recommended actions
technical and non-technical surveys to of activities by States to destroy their stock-
gather information on explosive hazards and piles of anti-personnel landmines and cluster Preparedness Response Recovery
ordnance, and then removing them. The aim munitions.
is also to remove the contaminating effects
1. Assessment, analysis and planning
of mines and ERW, so that civilians can return • Advocacy refers to activities to mobilize
to their homes and their daily activities safely. support for mine action and to convince
Invite survivors, persons with disabilities, and organizations that repre-
Member States to accede, ratify and imple-
sent persons with disabilities (OPDs) to participate in efforts to under-
• Risk education includes activities (such as ment the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Conven-
stand how mines and ERWs affect communities. Involve them in setting
X X
information campaigns, training, and liaison tion, the Convention on Cluster Munitions, the
priority areas for clearance and marking.
with communities) that reduce the risk of Convention on Certain Conventional Weap-
injury due to explosive hazards by raising ons and other relevant international agree- Ensure that planning addresses the specific requirements of persons
awareness and promoting behaviour change. ments such as the CRPD. with disabilities, and the risks they face. Involve persons with disabili- X X X
ties in setting priorities for the mine action sector.
• Victim assistance has the end goal of ensuring Mine action-related risks and impacts
that persons with disabilities, including mine 2. Resource mobilization
survivors, participate fully and effectively in soci- • Persons with disabilities may lack access
ety on an equal basis with others. This implies to risk education programmes. As a result, Make sure that proposals on mine action systematically consider
taking steps to achieve the highest attainable they may remain unaware of the dangers that X X
persons with disabilities regardless of the cause of their impairment.
standards of health, rehabilitation, psychosocial munitions pose or safe behaviours that miti-
support, inclusive education, social protection, gate those dangers.
3. Implementation
work and employment, as well as full participa-
tion and inclusion in society and an adequate • Persons with disabilities may be forced Take steps to make sure that community liaison activities take into
standard of living. It includes action to meet the to adopt unsafe behaviour. For example,
account, and involve, persons with disabilities, OPDs, and survivor
needs of casualties, survivors, other persons if latrines are not accessible, they may be
organizations. Consider capacity-building at community level to enable
with disabilities, the families of people injured forced to use uncleared areas at the outskirts X X
persons with disabilities and OPDs to assess risk, manage information,
and killed, and affected communities. Fields of settlements where ERW are still present.
develop local risk reduction strategies and advocate for mine action
of action include medical care, rehabilitation,
and other assistance interventions.224
psychosocial support, social inclusion, inclu- • Persons with disabilities may also have less
sive education and economic inclusion, includ- influence than others over land release and Integrate case studies and discussions of disability and disability inclu-
ing social protection. Data collection on the land clearance decisions. They may not sion in core trainings for staff involved in mine action. Include commu- X X
needs of victims is also required, and laws and participate in land release processes or deci- nity outreach staff, protection focal points and committees.
policies protecting and promoting the rights sions about which land is prioritized for clear-
of victims need to be passed and applied. ance, may not be given access to released Ensure that persons with disabilities are involved in decisions on the
land, and may be unable to secure title to handover of cleared land to communities, and decisions on the use of X
Non-discrimination, the recognition of human land. For these and other reasons, persons cleared land.
rights, the role of gender, and recognition of

222 
Global Protection Cluster, Mine Action (2018).
223 
Convention on Cluster Munitions (2008). See also UN Human Rights Council, Thematic study on the rights of persons with disabilities under article
11 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, on situations of risk and humanitarian emergencies, A/HRC/31/30, 30 November  NICEF and GICHD, International Mine Action Standards (IMAS) Mine Risk Education Best Practice Guidebook 1 (2005), and IMAS 04.10, 2nd
U
224 

2015, para. 19. edition, 1 January 2003 (as amended on 1 December 2004), 3.157.

162 163
16. Protection Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery • United Nations, United Nations Policy on


Victim Assistance in Mine Action (2016)
Ensure that reparations are not replaced by social protection schemes.225 X
• United Nations, Gender Guidelines for Mine
Action Programmes (2010)
Involve persons with disabilities and their representative organizations
in designing, implementing and evaluating risk education activities, X
including through peer-to-peer education activities.
• United Nations, The UN Mine Action Strategy
(2019–2023) (2018)
Ensure that risk education information is presented in multiple acces-
sible formats; adapt education materials.
X • Victim Assistance Resources Portal of the
Landmine and Cluster Munitions Monitor
Consult persons with disabilities and OPDs to identify their preferred
X X
communication channels.

Involve persons with disabilities and OPDs in designing and delivering


X
peer-to-peer education activities.

4. Coordination

Systematically include persons with disabilities in mine action coor-


X
dination forums.

Coordinate with all relevant sectors to ensure that referrals of persons


X X
with disabilities are made regardless of the cause of their impairments.

Engage persons with disabilities and OPDs in mine action coordination


meetings and provide reasonable accommodations to facilitate their X X
meaningful participation.

5. Monitoring and evaluation

Monitor and provide information on measures that are taken to improve


access to risk education and analyse the various impacts of mines and X X
ERW on the lives of persons with disabilities.

Tools and resources

• Geneva International Centre for Humanitar- • Mine Action Area of Responsibility website
ian Demining (GICHD), Guide to Mine Action
and Explosive Remnants of War (2007) • UNICEF and GICHD, IMAS Mine Risk Educa-
tion Best Practice Guidebook 1: An Introduc-
• H andicap International Factsheets, How to tion to Mine Risk Education (2005)
Implement Victim Assistance Obligations?
• UNICEF, Assistance to Victims of Landmines
• IMAS, International Mine Action Standards and Explosive Remnants of War: Guidance on
Child-focused Victim Assistance (2014)

225 
Office of the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, Thematic study on the rights of persons with disabilities under article 11 of the Convention
on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, on situations of risk and humanitarian emergencies, A/HRC/31/30, 30 November 2015, para. 12.

164 165
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

17 Shelter and
settlements

17. Shelter and settlements

Introduction See the section on Protection, espe-


cially SGBV and HLP.
In the early stages of an emergency, shelter is a criti- Ensure coordination with WASH.
cal determinant of survival, along with water supply,
sanitation, food and health care. Shelter plays an
essential role in reducing vulnerability and building
resilience in communities.226
Key legal instruments and other frameworks
The shelter and settlement sector aims to ensure the
dignity, privacy, safety and security of the affected • Convention on the Rights of Persons with
population while providing them with protection from
Disabilities (Articles 9 and 19 in particular)
the climate.
• Sustainable Development Goal 11
During humanitarian action, the shelter and settle- • Habitat III: The New Urban Agenda
ment sector also plays a key role in the inclusion of
persons with disabilities, because of its impact on • Office of the UN High Commissioner for
Human Rights and UN Habitat, The Right to
the built environment and environmental barriers
Adequate Housing (Fact Sheet No 21, Rev. 1)
and its important roles in personal protection and
livelihoods.

The cost of investing in barrier-free shelters that Key terms


respect universal design principles when shelter kits
are being prepared is significantly lower than the Shelter is defined as a “habitable covered space
cost of adapting shelters after construction. The providing a secure and healthy environment with
benefits of barrier-free shelters are felt by persons privacy and dignity for those residing within it”. Over
with disabilities but also children, older persons and time, this habitable space may evolve from an emer-
people who are sick or injured. gency to a durable shelter.227 Shelter assistance
includes (and often combines) many modalities and
Shelters should find solutions that meet the require- solutions: shelter kits and tents and their distribution;
ments of persons with all kinds of disability. In cash-based assistance; rental support; provision of
addition, they should allow adequate space for care- construction materials; labour; repairs; training and
givers, support personnel and family members. technical support; shelter and house construction, etc.

IFRC, Shelter and Settlements.


226 

For UN, DFID and Shelter Centre documents on shelter, see Shelter, Settlement and Recovery – (GBV) Guidelines.
227 

167
17. Shelter and settlements Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Shelter assistance includes three distinct response Diagram 12 | Barriers to access and inclusion in shelter and settlements
phases: emergency, recovery and durable solutions.
In reality these phases usually overlap, and shelter
responses are planned and implemented as a contin- (See also the definitions of universal HOW IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ARE EXACERBATED FOR PERSONS
uous, uninterrupted effort. In conflict settings, the design and accessibility in the section WITH DISABILITIES IN SHELTER
phases are less clearly defined, because people may on key concepts.)
experience numerous or prolonged displacements.
IMPACT OF CRISIS
Settlements are socially, economically, geograph-
ically and often politically and administratively Barriers Insecurity, breakdown of social networks, destruction of infrastructure,
defined entities in which human beings live and inter- displacement, closure of services
act. In a humanitarian context, settlements can be Shelter and settlement play an important role in
classified according to their size, duration (tempo- supporting inclusion and participation. Humani-
rality), condition, and legitimacy.228 tarian emergencies often affect the built environ-
ment and create new barriers that the design and
Transitional shelters include rapid, post-disaster construction of shelters and settlements can help to
household shelters made from materials that can be remove. Inclusive shelter and settlement program-
upgraded or re-used in more permanent structures ming enables persons with disabilities to contrib- !         EXACERBATED BY BARRIERS
or relocated from temporary to permanent locations. ute more to their communities, participate more in
They aim to facilitate the transition of affected popu- consultations and decision-making, and facilitate Environmental barriers:
lations to more durable forms of shelter.229 their own protection.
• Inaccessible shelters or latrines
• Inaccessible information regarding shelters
Emergency shelter refers to the provision of basic • Lack of household items that meet the requirements of persons with disabilities
and immediate shelter support that is necessary Standards and guidelines • Inadequate location of accessible shelters
to ensure the survival of crisis-affected persons. It
includes rapid response solutions such as the distri- • Sphere Handbook (2018) Attitudinal barriers:
bution of shelter items (tarpaulins, ropes, kits and • Negative attitudes and stigma against persons with disabilities
toolkits, tents, insulation materials), construction of • Help Age, CBM, Handicap International, • Lack of knowledge and awareness within humanitarian actors and organizations
temporary shelters, and distribution of household Humanitarian inclusion standards for older about how to meet accessibility and other requirements of persons with disabilities
items. people and people with disabilities (2018)
Institutional barriers:
Host families may be friends or family, or local fami- • IFRC, All Under One Roof: Disability-inclu- • Lack of technical capacity to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities in
lies, who offer temporary shelter in their own homes sive shelter and settlements in emergencies shelter
to persons displaced by a natural hazard or conflict. (2015) • Sector standards, guidelines and policies do not consider requirements of persons
This is usually a short-term arrangement but may with disabilities
persist if the displacement becomes protracted.230 • AusAid, Accessibility Design Guide: Univer- • Lack of budget to ensure accessible shelter and settlements
sal design principles for Australia’s aid • Building codes do not consider accessibility and universal design
Non-Food Items (NFIs) are items other than food programme (2009) • Institutional procedures and policies discriminate against persons with disabilities
used in humanitarian contexts when providing assis- • Lack of accurate data on persons with disabilities
tance to those affected by natural hazard or crisis. • Handicap International Nepal, Guidelines
They may include mattresses, blankets, plastic for Creating Barrier-free Emergency Shelters
sheets, hygiene kits, fans or heaters, etc.231 (2009)

Risks faced by persons with disabilities


228 
Handout for USAID/OFDA shelter and settlement presentation at Harvard University, 19 April 2018.
229 
IFRC, Transitional shelters: Eight designs (2011). Violence, poverty, environmental hazards, deterioration of health, exclusion, isolation
230 
IOM, Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR, Camp Management Toolkit (2015), p. 18.
231 
Adapted from UNHCR Syria, Non-food items.

168 169
17. Shelter and settlements Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Key elements – must do the 15 per cent estimate of global disability barriers and enablers. Informants should also
prevalence.232 be sensitive to wider issues, such as age and
‘Must do’ actions must be undertaken in all phases • Provide all assessment and reporting tools, gender.
of humanitarian action when implementing shel- and all information and communications on • Ensure that persons with disabilities and
ter and settlement programming for persons with shelter and settlement in multiple accessi- OPDs are included as key informants about
disabilities. ble formats, taking into account persons with
hearing, visual, intellectual and psychosocial The recommended actions below follow a twin-track approach. They ensure that persons with disabilities
disabilities. have equal rights and opportunities to shelter and settlements and can contribute to efforts to remove barri-
Participation ers and promote comprehensive inclusion and effective and meaningful participation.
• Implement strategies to reduce disability-re-
• Make sure that persons with disabilities, their lated stigma. Take steps to make the commu-
families, and organizations of persons with nity more aware of the rights of persons with
disabilities (OPDs) participate in identifying disabilities. Establish peer-support groups
barriers that impede access for persons with that include self-advocates with psychoso-
disabilities, and in planning, designing, imple- cial and intellectual disabilities.
menting, monitoring and evaluating shelter MAINSTREAMED TARGETED
and settlements. • R eview sectoral policies, guidelines and
tools to ensure that they clearly affirm the Shelter and settlement programmes and inter- Shelter, settlement and NFI distribution pro-
• Ensure that persons with disabilities are fairly right of persons with disabilities to access ventions are designed and adapted to ensure grammes accommodate the individual require-
represented, taking into account the various and inclusion.
they are inclusive of and accessible to every- ments of persons with disabilities, including in
forms of disability as well as age, gender and
one, including persons with disabilities. the emergency and recovery response.
diversity. Make concerted efforts to promote
underrepresented groups, including persons Empowerment and capacity development
with intellectual and psychosocial disabili-
ties, indigenous persons, women and girls in • Build the capacity of shelter and settle-
formal and informal activities, decision-mak- ment staff. Provide training on the rights of Recommended actions
ing and governance. persons with disabilities and the interactions
between disability and gender, age, migration Preparedness Response Recovery
• Involve persons with disabilities in the status, religion and sexuality.
development of community participation
1. Assessment, analysis and planning
mechanisms, and feedback and complaint • Build the capacity of OPDs to engage with
mechanisms, to ensure effective and barri- shelter and settlement agencies, identify
Map stakeholders. Include national interest organizations and govern-
er-free access. tools and resources, map challenges, capaci-
ment agencies with a disability and shelter-related portfolio (social X
ties and priorities, build knowledge of human-
services, housing, public works, etc.).
itarian aid and strengthen coordination.
Addressing barriers Analyse gaps in technical expertise with regard to universal design and
• Partner with OPDs and persons with disabil- accessibility. Recruit stakeholders who can fill these gaps. Be sure to
• Identify and monitor barriers that prevent ities to develop and deliver training. extend recruitment to include persons with disabilities and organiza-
X X
persons with disabilities from accessing tions that represent persons with disabilities (OPDs).
emergency relief, and measures that improve
access. Provide reasonable accommoda- Data collection and monitoring Evaluate recent shelter and settlement responses and design a
tions and organize outreach to facilitate full response that meets the requirements of persons with different types X
inclusion of persons with disabilities. • Collect and analyse shelter and settlement of disability. Build a library of good practice, including technical docu-
data on persons with disabilities; disaggre- mentation and tools, to promote knowledge and learning in the sector.
• U se universal design principles to design gate the data by sex, age and disability. Do
shelters and plan settlements. Create shaded this systematically across the humanitar- Involve OPDs in joint Vulnerability and Capacity Assessments (VCA)
X
or sheltered community spaces that are ian programme cycle. Where reliable data and joint site visits to designated emergency shelters.
appropriate for the climatic conditions. are not available or cannot be collected, use

WHO and World Bank, World Report on Disability (2011).


232 

170 171
17. Shelter and settlements Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery Preparedness Response Recovery

With OPDs, conduct accessibility audits of emergency shelters and When allocating durable shelter solutions, prioritize households that
X X X
plan accessible design adaptations to remove barriers. include persons with disabilities; bypass the transitional stage.

Consider the needs of persons with disabilities from the outset and Consult persons with disabilities to assess the accessibility of shel-
mainstream inclusion into all aspects of the shelter and settlement X X X ters. Base the analysis on the requirements of persons with disabilities X X
response. who live in them. Adapt temporary shelters accordingly.

Review shelter and settlement assessment tools and adapt question- Ensure that ‘build back better’ strategies and plans consider acces-
naires to be inclusive of persons with disabilities and reflect a gender X sibility, adopt universal design principles and prioritize the safety of X
and age perspective. (See the section on identifying Barriers.) persons with disabilities.

Working with local preparedness committees (where they exist), bring 4. Coordination
X
together disability experience and technical expertise.
If possible, coordinate joint distributions with other sectors to minimize
2. Resource mobilization the burden on persons with disabilities and their support networks. X X
(For example, prefer small separate distributions.)
Identify members of your team, or recruit staff, who have knowledge
X X X
and experience of disability and disability inclusion. With other sectors, identify the best locations for households with
persons with disabilities; or bring essential services (water, sanitation, X
Establish inclusive budgets that allocate resources to promote acces- food) closer to them.
sibility and inclusion and cover the costs of adapting shelter and NFI X X
kits to meet the requirements of persons with disabilities. Use coordination mechanisms to identify host families that can
X
accommodate persons with disabilities.
3. Implementation
With OPDs, design and build transitional shelters using universal
X X
Involve OPDs and persons with disabilities in consultations on suit- design principles.
able emergency shelter solutions for persons with different types of X X
disability. Locate transitional shelters for persons with disabilities near to acces-
sible sanitary facilities, water points and services; make them acces- X
Identify and set up safe shelter spaces to mitigate the protection risks sible in other ways.
that persons with disabilities face. Consider women, youth and those X X
with psychosocial disabilities particularly. When repairs and retrofitting are required, do an accessibility audit
X
alongside a damage assessment.
With OPDs, identify the best distribution modalities for shelter kits and
NFI kits. Options include accessible distribution sites, door-to-door Identify suitable units for rent, that are accessible and need little or
X X X X
delivery, a buddy system with other beneficiaries, sponsored trans- no adaptation.
port, priority lines, etc.
Recruit persons with disabilities to work in building and construction.
X X
Use temporary mobile ramps to increase accessibility. Focus on import- (See the section on cash-based intervention.)
X X
ant public buildings and service points, including distribution sites.
5. Monitoring and evaluation
Locate households that include persons with disabilities on plots closer
X
to support networks, water points, sanitary facilities, and services. Involve persons with disabilities and OPDs in monitoring processes.
X X
Prioritize persons with disabilities who live in a shelter.
Consult persons with disabilities to understand their individual acces-
X
sibility requirements for tents. Make complaint and feedback mechanisms accessible to persons
X X
with disabilities.

172 173
17. Shelter and settlements Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

Preparedness Response Recovery • Jones, H. and Wilbur, J., Compendium of


accessible WASH technologies (2014)
Monitor the accessibility of shelters and settlements (by audits, or by
consulting OPDs or persons with disabilities).
X • IOM, Norwegian Refugee Council, UNHCR,
Camp Management Toolkit (2015)
Appoint women, men, girls and boys with disabilities to monitoring
teams. Make sure they represent a range of disabilities.
X • UNHCR, Handbook for Emergencies (2007,
third edition). See Chapter 13: Commodities
Closely monitor the protection risks that persons with disabilities expe- distribution
X
rience in different locations and types of shelter. Monitor regularly.
• IFRC, Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment
• US Department of Justice, Checklist for emer-
Tools and resources gency shelters (2007)

• CBM, Practical Ways of Building Inclusive • HelpAge International, Ensuring inclusion • AusAid, Accessibility Design Guide: Univer-
Project Cycle Management: Project planning of older people in initial emergency needs sal design principles for Australia’s aid
and design assessments (2012) programme (2009)

• GPDD, Toolkit for inclusive reconstruction in • IFRC, Guidelines for assessment in emergen- • IDDC, Make Development Inclusive: Main-
Haiti (2010) cies (2008) streaming disability in development coordi-
nation (2008)
• Handicap International, Haïti: Abri transition- • UNHCR and Handicap International, Need to
nel (2011) know guidance 1: Working with persons with • Global Shelter Cluster, Inclusion of Persons
disabilities in forced displacement (2011) with Disabilities in Shelter and Settlements
• Handicap International, Disability and Vulner- Programming Working Group
ability Focal Points (DVFP) (2014) • Handicap International Nepal, Guidelines
for Creating Barrier-free Emergency Shelters • Global Shelter Cluster, Distributions: Shelter
• H
 elpAge International and Handicap Inter- (2009) Materials, NFI and Cash – Guidance to reduce
national, A study of humanitarian financing the risk of Gender-Based Violence
for older people and people with disabilities • IASC Emergency Shelter Cluster, Selecting
(2012) NFIs for Shelter (2008) • Americans with Disabilities Act Checklist for
Polling Places
• HelpAge International and IFRC, Guidance on • ICRC and IFRC, Emergency Items Catalogue
including older people in emergency shelter (2009, third edition)
programmes (2012)
• IFRC, The IFRC shelter kit (2009)
• IFRC, Transitional shelters: Eight designs
(2011) • IFRC, Shelter Safety Handbook: Some import-
ant information on how to build safer (2011)
• I FRC, Shelter Safety Handbook: Some import-
ant information on how to build safer (2011) • IFRC and Oxfam International, Plastic Sheet-
ing: a guide to the specification and use of
• IFRC, Post-disaster shelter: Ten designs plastic sheeting in humanitarian relief (2007)
(2013)
• Handicap International, Accessibility Assess-
• IFRC, CBM, Handicap International, All Under ment of Zaatari Refugee Camp (2012)
One Roof: Disability-inclusive shelter and
settlements in emergencies (2015) • IOM and UNHCR, Collective Centre Guide-
lines (2010

174 175
Guidelines on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action

18
Water,
sanitation
and hygiene

18. Water, sanitation and hygiene

Introduction  ee the section on Protection. The


S
Health and Education sectors should
The right to water and sanitation is a human right. ensure that WASH stakeholders draw
Adequate drinking water, sanitation and hygiene all on this section when they deal with
make contributions to health. The water, sanitation WASH concerns in schools and health
and hygiene (WASH) sector seeks to guarantee this centres.
right for all, even in times of crisis. WASH is more than
‘just’ water. It addresses hygiene, water supply, san