Disability in the Arab Region 2018

An overview

This report presents and analyses statistics relating to the demographic characteristics and socio-economic situation of persons with disabilities in the Arab region.

It carries this momentum forward. It includes more recent data for Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Mauritania, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Yemen. For the remaining countries analysed, the data have not been updated since the 2014 report, but have been more thoroughly verified and disaggregated. ESCWA countries have clearly made considerable efforts during recent years to enhance the availability and the quality of disability-related data. Many have adopted the method of measuring disability recommended by the Washington Group on Disability Statistics, which assesses a person’s difficulty performing basic universal activities (seeing, hearing, mobility, cognition, self-care and communication). Nevertheless, some limitations remain and reduce the comparability of the data.

The report concludes that Arab countries and regional stakeholders, including ESCWA, should continue their work to produce more and better disability data. It suggests that since disability intersects with other dimensions of vulnerability which include, but are not limited to, gender and location, efforts to overcome the marginalization of persons with disabilities should not be undertaken in isolation. Rather, adhering to the spirit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, such measures should be an integrated part of strategies to achieve inclusive development.