On 07-8 December 2019, the Doha International Conference on Disability and Development was opened by HH Sheika Moza bint Nasser. Her Highnesses opening remarks focused on societal failures to address disabilities that are not visible; such as those brought on by psychological illness, environmental stresses, extreme poverty, and conflict.
“If our concept of disability is based on visible disability, and ignores hidden disability, then doesn’t the illiterate suffer from an educational disability? Is ignorance not an intellectual disability? Isn’t there also such a concept as a political disability? And isn’t the violation and assault against others a moral disability?” HH Sheikha Moza said.
She continued: “I also believe distinguishing people apart based on the definition of disability implicates a form of discrimination. Sometimes, I even feel that the exceptions we make for people with disabilities, with the intention of showing sympathy toward them, do more harm than good.”
The Doha International Conference on Disability and Development is a landmark event in the disability advocates community and was attended by UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed. The conference concluded with calls to make education and employment more accessible to those with disabilities, and for the global community to invest in their differently-abled brothers and sisters.
(Image Source: Twitter – @UN_Enable)