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New Data from the 2013 CRPD ICT Accessibility Progress Report Shows Urgency for the United Nations to Promote a Disability Inclusive Development Agenda

Preliminary findings of the third edition of the CRPD Progress Report on ICT Accessibility will be released this week by G3ict – the Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies, in cooperation with DPI – Disabled People’s International, on the occasion of the General Assembly’s High-Level Meeting on Disability and Development at United Nations Headquarters in New York.

NEW YORK (September 23, 2013) —

DPI logo              G3ict logo  

Underlining the urgency for the United Nations to adopt a post-2015 development agenda inclusive of persons with disabilities, the CRPD 2013 ICT Accessibility Progress Report includes the latest data measuring the degree to which 72 States Parties are implementing the accessibility provisions of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). 

The report, developed jointly by the Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies (G3ict) and Disabled People’s International (DPI), offers disability advocates, governments, civil society and international organizations benchmarks for country laws, policies, and programs pertaining to accessible and assistive Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). Results cover 65 percent of the world population.                  

While noting some progress in implementing core dispositions of the CRPD, the report documents significant deficits in promoting policies and programs to make essential services accessible to persons with disabilities around the world.  For example:

● 50 percent of countries - compared to 31 percent in 2012 - now have a definition of accessibility which includes ICTs or electronic media in their laws or regulations in compliance with the definition of accessibility in CRPD Article 9, but only 25 percent define, promote and monitor accessibility standards for ICTs.           

● In 2013, about 73 percent of the countries have dispositions to consult persons with disabilities in the development of disability-related policies and programs, but only 12 percent have a systematic mechanism to involve Disabled Persons Organizations (DPOs) working in the field of ICT accessibility for the drafting, designing, implementation, and evaluation of laws/policies.               

● Only 31 percent of the countries have government funds allocated to programs in support of ICT accessibility in both 2012 and 2013, indicating a lack of progress,

● In 2013, only 31 percent of the countries report that they have public procurement policies promoting ICT accessibility, meaning that a majority of countries continue to buy equipment or services which may be inaccessible to persons with disabilities; and           

● In relation to the above, only 35.6 percent of countries in 2012 provided services to the general public, including through the Internet, in accessible and usable formats for persons with disabilities, while 40 percent of countries report providing such services in 2013.   

The accessibility of the information infrastructure, a vital area of ICT accessibility with the greatest impact on the largest population of users, is lagging behind ratifying countries’ general commitments to the CRPD: More than 80 percent of countries in 2013 report no or minimum levels of implementation of policies or programs promoting accessibility in critical areas such as mobile telephony, web sites, fixed telephony, transportation public address systems, television or Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs).

Javed Abidi, Chairperson of Disabled People’s International stated: “Depriving persons with disabilities from equal access to essential ICT-based applications and services violates the core dispositions of Article 9 of the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and creates an unsustainable economic and social development gap in our digital age.”        

About G3ict
G3ict – the Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies – is an advocacy initiative launched in December 2006 by the United Nations Global Alliance for ICT and Development, in cooperation with the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities at UNDESA. Its mission is to facilitate and support the implementation of the dispositions of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) promoting digital accessibility and Assistive Technologies. Participating organizations include industry, academia, the public sector and organizations representing persons with disabilities. G3ict organizes or contributes to awareness-raising and capacity building programs for policy makers in cooperation with international organizations, such as the ITU, ILO, UNESCO, UNITAR, UNESCAP, UN Global Compact and the World Bank. In 2011, G3ict launched the M-Enabling Summit Series to promote accessible mobile phones and services for persons with disabilities in cooperation with the ITU and the FCC (Federal Communications Commission). G3ict produces jointly with ITU the e-Accessibility Policy Toolkit for Persons with Disabilities (, as well as specialized reports which are widely used around the world by policy makers involved in the implementation of the CRPD. Visit    

About DPI
Disabled People’s International (DPI) is a dynamic grassroots global organization headquartered in Canada, with five Regional Development Offices in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America and Caribbean, operating in three official languages: English, French and Spanish. Established in 1981 and granted ECOSOC (United Nations Economic and Social Council) status shortly thereafter, DPI has 134 National Assemblies (country organizations) of persons with disabilities worldwide. Since its inception, DPI has collaborated with the United Nations (UN), civil society, governments and disability-related organizations to produce and disseminate information on disability worldwide.  DPI supports persons with disabilities around the world in their efforts to realize their human rights. It does this by promoting the full participation of persons with disabilities in all aspect of their community and by encouraging the equalization of opportunities and thereby, outcomes for persons with disabilities. Visit


Contact: Francesca Cesa Bianchi, Vice President, Institutional Relations, G3ict at