In 2017, BlueLaw International, LLP began implementing USAID's Expanding Participation of People with Disability (EPD) Program, a three-year project designed to empower disabled people's organizations (DPOs) in Bangladesh to advance implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in their district-level communities by strengthening their capacity for legal advocacy using the Disabled Persons Rights and Protection Act, 2013. To implement this project, BlueLaw partnered with the National Grassroots Disability Organization (NGDO), the National Council of Disabled Women (NCDW), and Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST).
Over three years, the project team supported seven DPOs across as many districts to educate over 6,000 persons with disabilities, their families, and allies about Bangladesh's Rights and Protection of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013, as well as to file the first 22 complaints under the novel Section 36 procedure before district-level committees created by the Act. The impact of EPD activities has been described in greater detail in "Mobilizing Disabled People's Organizations to Implement Bangladesh's Disability Law," published in the Oxford Journal of Human Rights Practice.
This project had four objectives:
1) BUILD DPOS' KNOWLEDGE BASE
BlueLaw will produce high-quality, action-oriented resources on the Rights and Protection of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013 for diverse stakeholders. These resources will be published in Braille, DAISY, and traditional formats and they will include audio and Bangla sign language versions to make this information widely accessible to persons with different types of disabilities.
2) DEVELOP ADVOCACY PROPOSALS
BlueLaw will strengthen DPOs' capacity to develop high-quality, needs-based, and strategic advocacy project proposals designed to use the Rights and Protection of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013 to promote CRPD implementation, so that they are well prepared to bid for future funding opportunities from prospective donors.
3) MOBILIZE STAKEHOLDERS
BlueLaw will enable DPOs in seven districts to mobilize national- and district-level stakeholders to implement the Rights and Protection of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013. BlueLaw will support small grantee DPOs in Barisal, Chittagong, Dhaka, Kushtia, Pabna, Rangpur, and Tangail to organize meetings with district committee members, conduct training and courtyard meetings, hold advocacy conferences, and link persons with disabilities to legal aid providers.
4) EVALUATE IMPACT
BlueLaw will enable DPOs to evaluate critically the impact of their advocacy projects and to identify avenues for future advocacy. For example, BlueLaw is supporting DPOs to use a custom-made, password-protected, web-based Case Tracking System app (available at: http://cts.blast.org.bd) to monitor the status of complaints and cases filed under the Rights and Protection of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2013.
These informational materials on the Persons with Disabilites Rights and Protection Act, 2013 can help you to learn about this law and also to educate others.
The U.S. Government, through USAID, has provided more than $7 billion in development assistance to Bangladesh since 1971. In 2018, USAID provided nearly $219 million to improve the lives of people in Bangladesh through programs that expand food security and economic opportunity, improve health and education, promote democratic institutions and practices, protect the environment, and increase resilience to climate change.
This website is made possible with the support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) under Cooperative Agreement No. AID-388-A-17-00005. The contents are the sole responsibility of BlueLaw International and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of USAID or the U.S. Government.
This domain was previously home to a joint report by NGDO, NCDW, and BLAST entitled “Current Status of Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Bangladesh: Legal and Grassroots Perspectives 2015,” produced with funding from the Disability Rights Fund. It is now available here.