Advocacy Issues


A 2015 UNICEF report provided an “indicative” findings on the problems faced by persons with disability in Vanuatu. It listed number of issues, namely:


Children with disabilities are significantly less likely to attend school than their non-disabled peers. For example, among 10-19 year olds, the gap in primary school attainment is more than 53 percentage points. Among adults, differences in educational attainment based on disability status are less pronounced, likely because a majority become disabled when they have passed the school age.


People with disabilities are much more likely to be poor; nearly 31 percent of people with severe disabilities are living in the lowest wealth quintile, compared with 16 percent of people without reported disabilities. The causal connection between disability and poverty is complex and multi-directional: disability could be caused by conditions associated with poverty; having a disability could inhibit one’s ability to obtain wealth; and/or households with more wealth may have better access to health care or other services that lessen the degree of disability even if it does not eliminate its presence.

Economic activity

While people with disabilities are equally likely to take part in productive activities as non-disabled people, they are less likely to be employed outside the home and more likely to be either self-employed or working in a family business. This shows that despite the willingness and capability of people with disabilities to undertake productive activities, there are barriers preventing them from obtaining employment.

Domestic violence against children and women

The data suggest that parents of children with disabilities are more likely to use the disciplinary practice of psychological aggression and less likely to use severe physical punishment than parents without children with disabilities. The husbands of women with disabilities were less inclined to justify wife-beating under certain circumstances. Since this finding differs from studies in other countries, further investigation is needed to determine if the finding is accurate, or merely skewed by certain methodological issues.

Promoting an inclusive, barrier-free and rights-based society for people with disabilities