Advocacy in a time of change

The world around us is changing constantly. In order for advocacy to be fit for purpose it needs to be accountable and rooted in the global, national and local contexts in which CBM Global works. Advocacy for national and global policy change is one of CBM Global’s vehicles to maximise our reach and impact, in conjunction with our inclusive community-based programmes and inclusion advice to other organisations. 

The goal of our advocacy work is to influence systemic and sustainable policy change in four key priority areas:

Equitable access to health and community-based services

Having access to health and community-based services is critical for people with disabilities and is required by the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and 2030 agenda. This priority focuses on contribution to policy change and actions that ensure inclusive, equitable and accessible delivery of services. By drawing on CBM Global’s experience of developing inclusive programmes and resources in health and other community based services, as well as working in partnership with Organisations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs), we will advocate for the foundations and pre-requisites for inclusion in health and community-based services. Find out more about our work in Inclusive Eye Health and Community Mental Health

Improved data for increased accountability

Evidence-based data on people with disabilities at the national and global levels are critical for advocacy as they identify the gaps and challenges by governments in meeting commitments. Having data and understanding how to use it is critical for OPDs so that they can work with policymakers to address the gaps and amend existing policies and regulations. Under this priority CBM Global, working in partnership with OPD partners and alliances on data, contribute to policies and actions that focus on data collection and advocate for better data on people with disabilities and other marginalised groups that are traditionally left behind. We target this advocacy globally through the World Data Forum and Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data. For national level advocacy, we work with our country teams and OPD partners through Leave no-one behind project, the Inclusive Data Charter.

Inclusive humanitarian action

Building on the positive developments in the humanitarian sector over recent years and the commitment for increased localisation and accountability to affected communities, there is now an imperative that these positive developments are inclusive of and accountable to people with disabilities and their representative organisations. Under this priority, CBM Global working in partnerships with OPDs is advocating for inclusion and accountability for people with disabilities and their representative organisations in the humanitarian sector.

Climate justice

Climate change and the need for climate-just responses present a global crisis and an emerging issue for the disability movement and the wider disability INGO sector. Sustainable Development Goal 13 and various articles in the CRPD, particularly 4.3 focused on consultation and engagement of OPDs in policies, creating an impetus for both intergovernmental and national level policy action on climate. Under this priority, CBM Global working in partnership with OPDs and through alliances with climate action networks, is advocating for disability inclusive international and national policies on climate change adaptation and mitigation.

How we work on advocacy

We recognise advocacy is as much local as global, and that this requires a flexible approach to ensure both our global and national advocacy work hand in hand. We work to achieve change through our four priority areas by leveraging the collective strength of the CBM Global federation and our OPD partners, both globally and nationally.

Global and national advocacy

Our advocacy work is focused on systemic and sustainable policy change as well as supporting Organisations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs) to hold governments to account on policy commitments. Delivering on their commitments is critical to ensuring that no-one is left behind in development and humanitarian responses.

The demand for policy change can be nationally driven, responding to national contexts, and it can also be internationally driven by the requirements to adhere and comply with normative frameworks such as the CRPD, and global frameworks such as Agenda 2030, IASC guidelines, Paris Agreement and others.

How we achieve this change at a global level:

  • Advocating for inclusive systems and policies in the United Nations (UN) via accessibility and data.
  • Working with alliances to influence global development and humanitarian frameworks.

How we achieve this change at a national level:

  • Advocating for changes to laws that discriminate and exclude.
  • Influencing rights-based policies.
  • Advocating for disability-inclusive budgets.

To achieve this, CBM Global country and member teams work in partnership with OPDs, government, civil society, mainstream service providers and the private sector.

Principles underpinning our advocacy approach

We follow CBM Global’s partnership principles and for our advocacy work, we commit to the following:

A shared vision of change: we commit to the co-production and co-creation of our advocacy strategies, campaigns and programmes in partnership with OPDs and other groups such as informal self-help groups and movements for social justice.

Building OPD capacity for advocacy: we commit to supporting the capacity development of OPDs and partner with them by way of skills transfers, technical support and other means, such as supporting organisational development on advocacy.

Adhering to human rights and international humanitarian law and principles: we commit to linking our advocacy work to policies that are grounded in specific human rights or international humanitarian law as well as in evidence from our own programmes or from research.

We are conscious of power dynamics: we commit to continuous learning and taking the necessary actions needed to rebalance power between CBM Global and its partners.

Accountability to OPDs and the wider disability movement: we see OPDs as our key stakeholders/partners in our advocacy work. We commit to holding ourselves accountable to all actions that we implement in carrying out our advocacy framework.

Our Partners and Alliances

Our advocacy work is undertaken with a range of strategic partners and networks, including the following: