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WeThe15: Global disability rights campaign launched before Tokyo Paralympics

Tokyo Paralympics

A global campaign, Wethe15, which aims to end discrimination towards the global 1.2 billion people with disabilities launched ahead of the much-awaited Tokyo Paralympics. The Tokyo Paralympics starts on August 24, 2021. The Paralympics chiefs launched the campaign.

“We believe that it’s really going to be a game-changer,” International Paralympic Committee (IPC) head Andrew Parsons told AFP.

Global Disability

Biggest Ever Campaign

 The campaign is the biggest ever attempt by the sports’ fraternity towards the human rights movement to end discrimination. It aims to transform the lives of the world’s 1.2 billion persons with disabilities who represent 15% of the global population. The mission is a comprehensive decade-long plan to bring change by forging a consequential alliance of international organisations from the world of sport, human rights, policy, communications, business, arts and entertainment.

Today, when the collective efforts of activists, NGOs, and media organisations are manoeuvring the discourse of diversity and inclusion, which includes race, gender, sexual orientation, etc., 15% of the population also want effective change to remove the inequality and inactivity. The campaign has borne out of a much needed global movement dedicated to publicly campaigning for disability visibility, inclusion and accessibility.

“We want to put disability at the heart of the inclusion agenda,” said IPC chief brand and communications officer Craig Spence, according to a media report.

“There has been so much progress in recent years in terms of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation. But disability has been forgotten about, despite the fact that it intersects those three areas.”

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The campaign will enhance the “knowledge of the barriers and discrimination” the persons with disabilities encounter on an everyday basis at all levels of society. The efforts will enable persons with disabilities to break down the barriers and help them reach their potential and be active and visible members of an inclusive society.


Color Purple: An Attempt for Global Visibility

The global campaign aims to follow other human rights movements such as Black Lives Matter and #MeToo and hence, will be visually identified based on the colour purple.  From New York’s Empire State Building to Rome’s Colosseum  lit up in purple on Thursday to mark the occasion of the mega movement, along with more than 125 landmarks around the world.

The campaign has drawn social media companies, celebrities like former football star David Beckham to chat show queen Oprah Winfrey to promote the campaign. Prince Harry’s Invictus Games Foundation is also a part of it.

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