Global Disability Summit

On 24 July 2018, the UK government co-hosted a global disability summit to celebrate the achievements and rights of people with disabilities.

A large group of people sit in a hall listening to a speaker at a Sightsavers event as part of the 2018 Global Disability Summit.

The first Global Disability Summit, which took place in London in July 2018, was hosted by the UK government, with the government of Kenya and the International Disability Alliance.

The UK Department for International Development (DFID) aimed to make the summit a celebration of the achievements and rights of people with disabilities, while ensuring that commitments were made that would create lasting change for people with disabilities around the world.

On 23 July, the day before the summit, a civil society day was hosted by the International Disability Alliance.

Sightsavers praised the summit’s success and welcomed the commitments made. Tessa Murphy, manager of Sightsavers’ Put Us in the Picture campaign, said: “The summit was a significant moment for Put Us in the Picture. For nearly five years we’ve been calling on the UK government to prioritise the rights of people with disabilities and the summit shows how seriously DFID takes this need.

“With the summit over, and a host of potential life-changing commitments made, the work now begins to ensure that pledges go from words to action. Today, we are one large step closer to making a disability-inclusive world a reality.”

Commitments made at the summit

National governments and other organisations made 170 commitments around the summit's central themes. These themes were:

  • Ensuring dignity and respect
  • Inclusive education
  • Economic empowerment
  • Harnessing technology
  • Women with disabilities
  • Conflict/humanitarian issues
  • Data disaggregation
  • Read the summary (pdf)

    Find out more about our campaign and the summit

    Read our news story

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    Voices of the Marginalised

    This study aimed to share the experiences of people with disabilities and older people living in developing countries. It covered the areas of social, political and economic inclusion.