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Participate in the surveys of the OHCHR and the Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities

You aare warmly invited to participate and to spread the following news!
Ms Catalina Devandas, Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities launched recently a questionnaire on disability-inclusive policies, in English, French and Spanish. The deadline to reply is 15 May 2016.

In addition, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights is preparing a study on article 5 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The deadline to reply is 30 June 2016.

Konferenz für junge Frauen mit Behinderung 14-15. Mai 2016

Frau sein – frei sein – gemeinsam stark!

Österreichweite Konferenz für junge Frauen mit Behinderungen

14. – 15.05.2016 in Salzburg

Ziel der österreichweiten Konferenz ist es, junge Frauen mit Behinderungen im Alter zwischen 12 – 26 Jahren zu bestärken, ihren Wünschen und Bedürfnissen Ausdruck zu verleihen und einen Austausch zu ermöglichen – kurz, Empowering für Privat- und Berufsleben zu betreiben!

Die Teilnehmerinnen erwartet ein abwechslungsreiches Programm:

Am Samstag und Sonntag ist Zeit, mal was Neues auszuprobieren – in zahlreichen Workshopangeboten (Dance Ability – Wer atmen kann, kann tanzen!, Ich kann mich durch setzen – Selbstbehauptung, Deine Stimme wirkt, Wilde kleine Frau – ich forme mich selbst, Ich bin schön – Wohlfühlnachmittag, Mein Körper – mein bester Freund, ganz  Mädchen – ganz Frau, Singen ist Leben…) und einer Tanznacht setzen sie sich damit auseinander, wie es sich anfühlt, im eigenen Körper zuhause zu sein, mit allen Sinnen wahrzunehmen und welche Möglichkeiten es gibt, um ein positives Körpergefühl beizubehalten…

„Körper- und Selbstbewusst“ präsentieren die jungen Frauen am Sonntag  Nachmittag zum Abschluss das, was sie in den Workshops erarbeitet haben und was ihre Wünsche und Forderungen sind, ihren Freunden und Freund-innen, Eltern, LehrerInnen…. Es sind auch PolitikerInnen da, die wissen wollen, was für sie  wichtig ist – privat und beruflich.

Anmeldeschluss bis 04.05.2016 verlängert!

Anmeldeforumlar Konferenz für junge Frauen

 Detailinfos und Anmeldung www.salzburg.gv.at/make-it



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Zero Project launches call for nominations of Innovative Policies 2017 on Employment

Work is essential for realizing other human rights and it forms an inseparable and inherent part of human dignity. Employment of persons with disabilities is about the opportunity to gain a living by work freely chosen or accepted in a labour market and work environment that is open, inclusive and accessible.

Hence, the Zero Project 2017 is focusing on Work, Employment, and Vocational Education and Training, and our call for nominating innovative policies has just been launched!

Any type of policy can be nominated, concerning:

  • any form of work (employment, own-use production work, volunteer work, trainee work),
  • any status of employment (employees, employers, own-account workers, members of producers’ cooperatives, contributing family workers and other) and
  • all phases of employment (including recruitment, hiring and employment, advancement and conditions of work), including those innovations that facilitate the transition from segregated settings to forms of employment in the open labour market.

Consider, for instance, policies concerning:

  • non-discrimination,
  • the transition from school to work,
  • technical and vocational guidance,
  • placement services and assistance in finding, obtaining, maintaining and returning to employment,
  • vocational and continuing training, inclusive apprenticeships,
  • adaptations to the workplace, job design, tools, machinery and work organisation,
  • self-employment, entrepreneurship, cooperatives and starting one’s own business,
  • financial incentives and tax exemptions,
  • just and favourable working conditions,
  • career advancement,
  • part-time employment and other job arrangements,
  • supported employment,
  • coordination with other services (e.g. embedding employment specialists in clinical treatment teams),
  • peer support,
  • train-the trainer-programmes,
  • disability-inclusive social security or
  • certification of companies.


You know about an outstanding policy? Nominate it!


Submitting a nomination is easy:

Read the instructions first, complete the nomination form (also available in other languages) and then send the nomination form to: i.heindorf@zeroproject.org by May 15, 2016 (23:59 CET).


If selected, the nomination will be included as an “Innovative Policy 2017” in the Zero Project Report and on our Website. Nominated organizations as well as their nominators will be invited to become part of the Zero Project expert network. Moreover, representatives of the most outstanding Innovative Policies will be invited to present at the Zero Project Conference in February 2017 in Vienna (Austria).

We are looking forward to receiving your nomination!


The Zero Project Team & Zero Project Partners

The European Network on Independent Living logo

April issue of ENIL’s Independent Living News is out!

The April newsletter of Zero Project partner ENIL is now available online.

It most importantly informs about the activities planned for 5th May, which will be the 3rd European Independent Living Day! This is an annual day to raise awareness about the right to Independent Living, the importance it has for disabled people and how it allows us to live ordinary lives. Participate, also via Facebook!

It also contains information about:

  • ENIL Youth Network’s study session on sexuality and relationships that finished only some days ago,
  • the General Day of Discussion held by the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on 19th April, at which disability organisations, human rights groups, researchers and others came together at the United Nations in Geneva to discuss the States’ obligations under Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and much more.

Check it out online, it’s a good read!

WFC Council and staff AGM2016

New trainee position available in our Geneva team!

The Zero Project team in Geneva, responsible for policy research and conference organisation, and under the lead of the World Future Council, is looking for a new full-time trainee that would provide similar great support as given by Pierre Al-Hammoud, who was with us since June 2015 and who left the team at the end of April 2016:


  • Be a part of the Zero Project team
  • Research background information on disability law and policy (focus: Employment)
  • Liaise with contacts, project partners and media
  • Editorial work on website (WordPress) and social media (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Youtube)
  • Report to the Supervisor


  • Academic background, preferably in international relations, political sciences or law
  • Good understanding of human rights issues and disability policy
  • Excellent communication skills in English. Language skills in Spanish, French, German, Russian, Arabic and/or Chinese are an asset.
  • Good IT literacy and organizational skills. WordPress experience is an asset.
  • Having a direct experience of disability or with persons with disabilities is an asset
  • Outgoing personality with a ‘can-do’ attitude
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of an international team
  • Be reliable and capable of paying close attention to detail
  • Be committed to the WFC’s vision and mission of long-term sustainability and equity
  • Swiss or EU nationality is required

The WFC Foundation offers the trainee CHF 750 per month. The WFC is an equal opportunities employer and encourages persons with disabilities to apply.

To apply, please send a letter of motivation, a CV and work sample as well as your skype contact details to the Zero Project Head of Policy Research and Conference Organisation: Ms Ingrid Heindorf, Ingrid.heindorf@worldfuturecouncil.org. Subject heading: Human Rights Trainee and your name. Deadline: 18 May 2016. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

Download Vacancy Announcement – Trainee


“Transfer international commitments into national policies!”

Habitat III will take place in wonderful city of Quito Ecuador from 17th to 20th October this year. This is going to be one of the most important global forums to follow up the implementation of the 2030 Development Agenda. The conference is going to result in a new global framework: the New Urban Agenda and this will give us the future direction of urbanization across the world.

We have been contributing to this process leading to Habitat III by organizing the Nairobi conference which took place last year; we also collaborated with the UN Habitat Secretariat to organize a number of events and panel discussions relating to disability inclusion and urban development. We are also collecting good practices with the Zero Project with all of you and with the Secretariat to advance the accessible and disability inclusive urban agenda, so that we can compile the information, compile all the progress that has been made in in terms of promoting an accessible and inclusive urban agenda. From the policy standpoint this issue of disability inclusion and accessibility has been codified in major international instruments and General Assembly resolutions and other international commitments.

For example the convention itself the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities establishes accessibility as a precondition for persons with disabilities to enjoy all the human rights and to meaningfully participate in society and development. This has been reiterated again at the United Nations General Assembly high-level meeting on disability and development that took place in 2013.

The International Committee recognized that accessibility is one of the top priority issues for any aspect of inclusive development. The 2030 Development Agenda itself, especially its Goal 11 of the Development Targets, refer to disability and accessibility.

The key question before us is: How can we transfer those international commitments into national and urban policy and practices to ensure that that development is inclusive of all people including persons with disabilities?

The UN has been actively promoting inclusive development as an integral part of its original mandate in the field of disability, including in urban contexts. But our studies have found that the barriers or lack of accessibility have been a major obstacle to the achievement of inclusive and sustainable development.

The upcoming Habitat III conference will be able to do offer us a great and very unique opportunity to fill the gap between commitment and practice. The outcome document of Habitat III will be drafted by the PrepCom (Preparatory Committees) on the basis of inputs from regional and thematic consultations as well as contributions from the policy units. The preparatory conference will be convened in Mai, June and July in 2016 to draft the outcome document. The outcome, the final agreement will take place at the third PrepCom meeting in Jakarta/Indonesia from 25th to 27th July 2016.

I would just like to mention that there will be consultations with major groups and stakeholders in the coming months and please also keep yourselves updated in terms of when those major groups and stakeholders consultations take place through Habitat III website.

We are now at that critical and historical moment when Habitat III is to discuss and develop a new global agenda for the next two decades. Let us work together to make sure that any aspect of the process leading to the Habitat III conference will be accessible and also will be inclusive.

In other words: Persons with disabilities and their partners in promoting accessibility and inclusive development should be an integral part of the mainstream discussion of the international community as to how we can create an inclusive and accessible environment for new urban development agenda. I look forward to working with you very closely and I hope that we will be able to make a difference such as in the Sendai framework and that we will be celebrating yet another success by early 2017.


Akiko Ito is the Chief of the Secretariat of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities at the Division for Social Policy and Development of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA/DSPD).

This commentary is taken from the video statement given by Ms. Ito at the Zero Project Conference in Vienna, February 10, 2016.


Barclays launches a web portal on business and accessibility

http://famouslogos.net/images/barclays-logo.jpgIn order to help businesses  to meet the needs of disabled customers, Barclay recently launched a new web portal – www.barclayscorporate.com/accessibility

This new digital resource which will help enable businesses to learn how organisations have made the leap from a ‘tick the box’ attitude to accessibility, to one which seeks to innovate, inspire and engage.

A research was also commissioned by Barcklays in order to mesure the level of accessibility of 500 companies in the UK, and you can find the full findings here.


Job opportunity at Light for the World

Our partner Light for the World is currently looking for an International Director Communications. The person will be part of their International Management Team and will be responsible for an overarching communications strategy. The place of work is flexible, working language is English.

Interested candidates may also apply via their webpage: http://www.light-for-the-world.org/take-action/engage/

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Zero Project Conference 2016 Retrospective is online!

With 516 participants from more than 70 countries and with 35 sessions, engaging 198 speakers, the Zero Project Conference 2016 on Inclusive Education and ICT was a wonderful climax of 5 years of collective efforts.

Moreover, the event was hosted once again by the United Nations Office in Vienna from 10 till 12 February 2016 – our special thanks therefore go to UNOV and the Austrian Ministry of European and International Affairs for their great support.

Browse through our exciting retrospective which is now online!