On 22nd March, ACP YPN and CBM International launched their joint paper on “Sustainable investments for youth and young people with disabilities: Putting youth at the heart of EU-ACP relations” at the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, Brussels. The joint paper takes the position that investing in all youth in the European Union – Africa, Caribbean, Pacific (EU-ACP) partnership is a sustainable investment. The joint paper puts forward 12 concrete recommendations for mainstreaming all youth – especially youth with disabilities – in three specific sectors: Education; Employment and Environment. It also makes three broader recommendations for the EU-ACP partnership:
1. Establish an annual inter-generational dialogue between young experts including those with disabilities and policy makers. This aims to foster inclusive policy-making.
2. Enhance data disaggregation across EU and ACP States to improve statistics on monitoring and evaluation. Decision makers must make use of the Washington Group set of questions to collect data on disability.
3. Implement diverse, simplified and inclusive funding modalities. This promotes a pluralistic approach including YCSOs, local CSOs and Disabled People Organisations (DPOs).
This paper also uniquely identifies the intersectionality of youth by adopting an inclusive approach – referring to all youth to guarantee that no one is left behind as stated in the United Nations (UN) Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development. It explains that it is fundamental to continue to implement the ambitions of the EU-ACP Cotonou Partnership agreement, and to build its acquis in order to be better prepared for the expiry of the CPA in 2020.
The paper was drawn up based on three years of consultative processes by ACP YPN with youth in EU and ACP countries. Moreover, it also build on ACP YPN’s advisory role on navigating international organisations through understanding the linkage between youth and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and CBM’s expertise on disability inclusive development. It was compiled by June Lacour, Programme Coordinator, ACP YPN; Ariane Lignier, CBM (email@example.com); and Yentyl Williams, Director, ACP YPN.
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