Towards better inclusion of People with Disability rights in Lao PDR

The Lao Statistic Bureau, the Ministry of Planning and Investment will disseminate the results of the Monograph Report on People with Disability in Lao PDR that uses the data from the 4th Population and Housing Census 2015.

Led by the Lao Statistic Bureau, Lao Population and Housing Census with support of Humanity and Inclusion and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs the study findings clearly evidenced the fact that people with disabilities have poorer socio-economic conditions and more limited opportunities compared to those of population without disabilities in Laos.

In the Lao PDR, over 160,800 people live with a disability (among population aged +5). The Disability Monograph derived from the 2015 Census data tells us that disability prevalence in the Lao PDR is higher in remote geographical areas (3.33% in rural areas without roads, 2.86% in rural areas with roads, 2.48% in urban areas), and higher among diverse ethnic groups.

The Government of the Lao PDR ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), which spells out the human rights of persons with disabilities across sectors. Several strategies, policies and action plans targeting persons with disabilities – one of the most deprived groups – were consequently adopted over the past years in the Lao PDR.

Accurate disability data are crucial to inform policy-making by government agencies, to plan needs-based programmes targeting persons with disabilities.

The report identifies critical services to increase inclusivity, education, labour, social protection as well as disability related data to ensure persons with disabilities benefit from social, economic and environmental development in the Lao PDR.

“The main purpose of this Disability Monograph is to sensitise the society in the Lao PDR about the situation of persons with disabilities. Statistics is very useful for policy makers and planners in changing attitudes towards persons with disabilities as well as in developing equitable services for them. We are pleased to partner with UNFPA for the dissemination,” says Head of Lao Statistics Bureau Phonesaly Souksavath.

“UNFPA’s supports collection and analysis of disaggregated data by multiple dimensions, to identify marginalized groups, including persons with disabilities. The findings show that those with disabilities have significantly poorer socio economic conditions and fewer opportunities. Differences are even more significant when analysed by gender, income quintile and ethnic group. This data allows decision makers and budget planners to invest in those being left behind,” said Ms. Mariam A. Khan, UNFPA Representative.

UNFPA in the Lao PDR provides support to the government towards achieving the ICPD25 commitments to Leave No One Behind. It supports interventions based on human rights, key areas include i) evidence and data, including best practices, ii) promoting high level advocacy and increasing community awareness; iii) developing standards for interventions in health and other sectors, iv) strengthening programmes through stronger disability inclusion in sexual and reproductive health and rights; efforts to end gender-based violence and v) Building partnerships with organizations of persons with disabilities.

Source: Lao News Agency