CBM Australia is concerned that the Australian Government is considering deep cuts to Australia’s aid budget of up to 10%.
“We are concerned about the impact this will have on some of the world’s most marginalised people, including people with disabilities,” said Jane Edge, Chief Executive Officer, CBM Australia.
“Reaching those furthest behind, particularly people with disabilities, is critical to ensure we meet the Sustainable Development Goals. This requires sufficient and stable funding that guarantees all people are included in Australia’s development efforts.
“We know that when Australian aid investments are faced with budget pressures, disability inclusion may look like an easy cut. But it’s a cut that will hurt the most vulnerable people.
“The Australian Government’s own foreign policy white paper noted that economic growth in our region alone will not guarantee prosperity and stability, particularly for the most disadvantaged groups, which include people with disabilities.
“The white paper also highlights that the Government will use its term on the United Nations Human Rights Council to promote the rights of people with disabilities. The fiscal decision foreshadowed today undermines these commitments.
“Over the past decade, the Government has shown bipartisan leadership through its back-to-back Development for All strategies for disability inclusion in Australia’s aid program. This policy commitment has made real impact in the lives of people with disabilities in our region and beyond.
“Right now, the Government should be working on the third strategy, rather than undermining the achievements and progress of the previous two.
“Later this year, the Government will attend the world’s first Global Disability Summit in the UK. We hope that we can hold our heads high among other disability leaders at this meeting, knowing that our continued investment is supporting global development efforts to leave no one behind.”
CBM Australia is an international Christian development organisation, committed to improving the quality of life of people with disabilities in the poorest countries of the world.
CBM Australia is an ACFID member and part of the Campaign for Australian Aid coalition.