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17 October 2023 - FCDO and disability-inclusive development - Oral evidence

Committee International Development Committee
Inquiry FCDO and disability-inclusive development

Tuesday 17 October 2023

Start times: 2:00pm (private) 2:30pm (public)

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Is FCDO spending and strategy sufficient to meet its commitments on disability-inclusive international development? IDC opens oral evidence in new inquiry

One in six people in lower income countries live with a disability and they are more likely to experience poverty, discrimination and sexual violence. In humanitarian emergencies, disabled people find it far more difficult to get relief and recovery support.

In 2021 the UK launched its National Disability Strategy which committed the UK Government to supporting people with disabilities in the UK and around the world, and to putting the needs and experiences of people with disabilities at the heart of government policy-making and service delivery.

The commitment to “building an inclusive future for all” through a sustainable, rights-based approach was reaffirmed in the FCDO’s 2022 disability inclusion and rights strategy.

But in August this year the Committee published the FCDO’s own analysis of the impact of its aid budget cuts on equalities. That assessment set out the disproportionately damaging impact for disabled people of significant, ongoing cuts to the UK’s direct aid spending, and the consequences they will face.

It showed that programmes specifically aimed at reaching those furthest behind – including disabled people, women and girls – would be cut.

Meeting details

At 2:30pm: Oral evidence
Inquiry FCDO and disability-inclusive development
Researcher at Fight for Right
Global Research and Response Lead at Disaster Strategies
Lower Limb Prosthetic Technologist at Leonard Cheshire Zimbabwe
At 3:00pm: Oral evidence
Inquiry FCDO and disability-inclusive development
Country Director for Nigeria and Ghana at Sightsavers
Kenya Country Team Programme Manager at CBM
Director of Delivery and Impact at Able Child Africa

On Tuesday October 17 the Committee will hear the first oral evidence in this inquiry, from rights groups and advocates working with disabled people on the ground in lower income countries.

Is the FCDO’s strategy and spending now sufficient and effective enough to meet its own commitments to disabled people around the world? Or will UK development programmes now in fact be less disability-inclusive?

The first panel will describe disability-inclusion in the humanitarian response in Ukraine following the Russian invasion, during the covid-19 pandemic across the world and the measures needed for full inclusion of disabled women and girls in humanitarian and development programmes, including on sexual health and gender-based violence.

The second panel will focus on current issues in disability inclusion across UK development programmes from the perspective of those who have designed and delivered the programmes, including the suitability of the FCDO’s “Disability and Inclusion Rights Strategy 2022-30”; whether the FCDO’s action on disability inclusion lives up to its rhetoric; FCDO efforts to engage stakeholders when designing and implement disability-inclusive programming, and their own experience of the impact of the recent cuts to the UK ODA budget.


The Wilson Room, Portcullis House

How to attend