The Federal Council has approved Switzerland’s endorsement of the Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action at its meeting today. This is in line with Switzerland’s humanitarian policy and reaffirms its efforts to facilitate access to relief aid for persons with disabilities and to make provisions for their particular needs.
Persons with disabilities are particularly vulnerable in humanitarian crises – such as armed conflicts or natural disasters – as they do not usually have the same capacities to access water, food or medical care. In order to make provisions for their particular needs in such emergency situations, the Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action was drawn up by various states, UN agencies and civil society organisations.
The Charter sets out five principles:
- Non-discrimination and respect for the diverse needs of persons with disabilities.
- Participation of persons with disabilities in shaping humanitarian programmes.
- Inclusive humanitarian response and services geared to the needs of persons with disabilities.
- Development of a global inclusive policy.
- Fostering of cooperation and coordination among humanitarian actors to improve the inclusion of persons with disabilities.
The Charter and its five principles reflect the objectives and values of Switzerland’s humanitarian policy. By endorsing the Charter, Switzerland is underlining to its partner countries its commitment to continuing its efforts to improve the inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action.
The Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action was adopted at the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul in May 2016. It is based on Article 11 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which Switzerland ratified in 2014.