Children with disabilities—invisible no more

UNICEF’s The State of the World’s Children 2013, released on May 30, opens with the challenge that global estimates of the number of children with disabilities are out of date. Frequently drawing on a 2004 estimate, it is around 93 million children. How, then, are we able to best meet the needs of these children without knowing the magnitude of the need? In response, the report emphasises that characterisation of children with disabilities as a problem is the problem itself. In much of the world, these children are simply invisible—hidden in institutions or, worse yet, neglected or abandoned. Infanticide persists. Systematic discrimination is not uncommon. The ways to remove these obstacles and barriers, as the report insists, are the inclusion and increased visibility of children with disabilities.

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