BBI supports the work of Egyptian disability advocates

October 21, 2013

BBI’s Janet Lord travelled to Cairo, Egypt in early October to work with local disabled peoples organizations (DPOs) preparing for forthcoming elections. 

The project, funded by U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and spearheaded by the Washington-DC based democracy organization, International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), aims to advance electoral access for Egyptians with disabilities. The project consists of several components, including focus groups in five governorates, polling center accessibility audits, and reporting to and training of election officials on enhancing election access for persons with disabilities. Lord, an election access expert who has worked with Disabled Peoples' Organizations (DPOs) on election access in more than 15 countries, will travel back to Cairo in late November in order to work with the lead DPO, NAS Foundation, to facilitate focus groups and accessibility audits. Dr. Ashraf Marie, a former BBI Visiting Fellow and Chairman of NAS, is leading the effort to promote disability rights in Egypt during the political transition. His organization is working with election officials to identify barriers and implement changes so that all Egyptians can access the electoral process.

Lord’s work on political participation and election access to advance the human rights of persons with disabilities will be featured in two forthcoming articles in the Harvard Journal of International Law and Human Rights Practice.  Some of her training materials on election access are available in Chapter 3 of the human rights education manual published by the University of Minnesota Human Rights Center: Janet E. Lord, Katherine Guernsey, Joelle Balfe & Allison deFranco, Human Rights. YES! Action and advocacy on the rights of persons with disabilities (2d ed., 2012).

This project expands the domestic work on political participation undertaken by BBI in the United States.

Janet Lowrd and representatives