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Annual State Of World’s Children Report Calls For End To Discrimination Against Children With Disabilities

“In its annual State of the World’s Children report, UNICEF says ending discrimination against children with disabilities and nurturing their abilities will benefit both the children and society as a whole,” VOA News reports, adding, “The report presents a grim assessment of the discrimination and stigma suffered by tens of millions of children with disabilities in all regions of the world” (Schlein, 5/29). “Disabled children are at greater risk of being poor, are least likely to receive an education and health care, and in many countries face abandonment or institutionalization, according to the report,” Agence France-Presse/The Telegraph writes (5/30). “The marginalization of children with disabilities can begin at birth; many are not officially registered in their first days of life,” The Guardian writes, noting, “UNICEF has urged countries to start the process of inclusion early by pinning down the number of disabled people in their population” (Tran, 5/29).

“This year, UNICEF’s flagship publication highlights not just the challenges of the estimated tens of millions of children who live with disabilities, but also the contributions they can make, if allowed to achieve their ambitions,” a Save the Children press release states (Niles, 5/29). “The report says that while the situation facing disabled youngsters varies widely from country to country, the solution generally lies in a change of focus from what such children cannot to what they can do,” Deutsche Welle notes (5/30). “The report’s executive summary lays out nine key recommendations for building inclusive societies that help children with disabilities reach their potential,” according to The Star, which notes, “The report also urges an end to placing disabled children in institutions, where they are more likely to suffer abuse or neglect” (Yang, 5/30). The Guardian’s “Data Blog” discusses some of the findings of the report (Chalabi, 5/30). Also this week, “[t]he international coalition Countdown to 2015 released a report tracking progress toward the U.N. Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) related to child and maternal health, and the non-profit Save the Children published a separate report addressing child malnutrition,” GlobalPost notes (Miley, 5/29).