International Day of Persons with Disabilities
By: Abby Doerr
Today, December 3rd, marks the twenty-third annual International Day of Disabled Persons, a day that has been recognized by The United Nations since 1992. This special commemoration was created to bring countries from all over the world together in support for disabled individuals. Each year is given a unique theme and the focus of 2015 is inclusion, access and empowerment.
Members of local organizations, like Extra Special People, are aimed at supporting disabled individuals in Athens-Clarke County all year round. Katarina Christmann from ESP says that she thinks this day is a great opportunity to remind the community of how important it is to be inclusive of all types of people.
“Kind of everyday we are celebrating individuals with disabilities, so this is cool. ”
She does however hope that community members will work to support and empower these individuals every day, not just once a year.
“They want to get to know you, they want you to acknowledge them. So if you see someone with a disability-feel comfortable saying hi to them.”
According to The United Nations, national data collecting on persons with disabilities is lacking. The UN attributes much of the invisibility affect faced by disabled individuals to this issue. The organization aims to use the attention of this day to help better all types of experiences and the overall lives of disabled citizens.
For more information on the hopes of the future check out The United Nations website: http://www.un.org/disabilities/default.asp?id=1637