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Politics

The right of people with disabilities to take part in decision-making at all levels, including in the electoral process, is critical if they are to influence policies that affect their lives.

Smiling woman wearing sunglasses and orange headscarf.
Monica is leaning against a wall and smiling. She is wearing a bright green, yellow and red dress.

Put Us in the Picture

We campaign for a world where everyone has the right to participate fully in society.

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In many countries, electoral systems aren’t inclusive, meaning people with disabilities are often excluded from participating on an equal basis. In many cases, they’re even denied the right to vote.

Sightsavers researches the impact of exclusion and inclusion in elections and works in partnership with disabled people’s organisations in developing countries to address policy implementation, access, and stigma and discrimination.

We are also designing political participation projects in Senegal and Cameroon, both of which promote inclusive elections. This means people can enter polling booths and cast their votes independently (whether electronic or paper-based); where political parties equitably represent disability issues and people with disabilities can participate as candidates; and where all voters have accessible legal documentation and information, such as party manifestos, so they can vote.

I like the work from the bottom of my heart. I’m happy when people with disabilities can do things
for themselves.
Anuradha, disability campaigner
A woman with crossed arms smiling at the camera.

Resources

Reports and reviews

Disability-inclusive elections in Africa: a qualitative systematic review

A systematic review aiming to identify, appraise and combine available evidence to understand what practices have already taken place in African countries to support the political participation of people with disabilities, and what effect they have had at local and national levels.

View the review [pdf]

 

Empowerment and inclusion strategic framework (2015)

This framework explains our rights-based approach of mainstreaming disability throughout our programming and operations, and complements our other global strategies on eye health, education and research.

View the strategic framework [pdf]

More about politics

Rajab is sitting, holding his camera.
Sightsavers Reports

Rajab’s story

After completing vocational training with our Connecting the Dots programme, Rajab advocates for the rights of people with disabilities in his district.

A road and a village
sightsavers_news

Sightsavers to co-host event at High-Level Political Forum

The event, on 10-19 July, will take place alongside the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development at the UN headquarters.

Jaharana prepares a meal.
Sightsavers Reports

Jahanara’s story

Jahanara was born blind, and for 27 years she rarely left the house. But Sightsavers helped her find her voice, and she now campaigns for disability rights.

We campaign for equality for people with disabilities

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