A Nordic region for all
Making our societies accessible to all is something that the Nordic countries and the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland are constantly working on. This means that people with disabilities shall have the same rights as everyone else when it comes to participation in education, work and society as a whole. This is something that is important so that the Nordic welfare model can survive.
NOTE: The project A Nordic Region for All has been completed and replaced by the project Universal Design, Participation and Democracy. You can read more about our continuing work there.
The Nordic welfare model can only survive if as many people as possible get engaged in the economy. Many people with disabilities are currently excluded unnecessarily due to lack of accessibility and negative attitudes. Equal participation is also a question of rights. The project A Nordic Region for All was aimed at finding workable strategies to promote the inclusion of people with disabilities in society.
Three important factors for achieving this goal are:
- Inclusive decision-making
- Gender equality
- Universal design
People with disabilities must be involved in the decision-making processes that affect their own lives. They, like everyone else, should have the opportunity to access information, make comments and influence important decisions. But also to be able to engage in public debate, associations and politics.
Women with disabilities are more excluded than men in the workplace. This creates exclusion for the individual, but women with disabilities are also an untapped resource in society. Gender equality does not come automatically but needs to be promoted with active measures. Otherwise, women with disabilities face multiple discrimination.
No one shall be left behind
Universal design covers the entire range of human diversity. Both physical and cognitive abilities, including language characteristics and functional variations based on gender and age. Universal design has many values. If we develop products, buildings, environments and systems from the outset that are based on this human diversity, we can create a more functional and valuable world for everyone.
This ethical platform for inclusion is, among other things, the basis for cooperation within the UN for a sustainable society. In the Nordic countries, no one should be left behind.