By Chris Levick, WFD Regional Director, Europe & Central Asia Governments around the world have introduced emergency measures to fight the coronavirus, often alongside significant financial support packages designed to cushion the economic impacts of the virus and ensure livelihoods. Within Europe we have seen some extreme examples: The Hungarian parliament – with its hefty […]
Making democracy more inclusive of persons with disabilities in North Macedonia
In North Macedonia, WFD is working with persons with disabilities (PWDs), a marginalised and underrepresented group in society, to ensure their needs are at the top of the policy agenda. This work is being done as part of WFD’s Western Balkans Democracy Initiative.
Through the initiative, WFD has built partnerships with PWD advocacy groups to create an alliance for positive change. The initiative includes a cross-party group of MPs from the parliament of North Macedonia, several of whom invited PWD advocates to work with them in parliament for a day. These ‘shadow’ activities were filmed and published on social media, helping to raise broader awareness about PWD inclusion and equality and also to expand MPs’ knowledge of barriers impacting the well-being of PWD citizens. The videos received more than 10,000 views.
Additionally, WFD has been working with political parties to make their websites and campaign materials more accessible to people with disabilities, many of which were used in the recent presidential election. The alliance is now working to establish inclusive outreach and communication methods by political parties as standard practice in anticipation of parliamentary elections scheduled for 2020.
In April 2020 almost 200 students in North Macedonia logged in to online sessions empowering them be active members of the academic community and society. Due to the measures to protect against COVID-19 in the country, students were among the first groups to change their lives with the closing down of schools and universities mid-March. […]
Civil society organisations (CSOs) are a channel through which citizens can engage constructively with government to make sure that adequate services are provided, helping to build more inclusive and accountable democracies. Their role is especially important during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as people’s freedoms are curtailed and usual channels of engagement with government are […]