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Egypt explores next steps in conducting a study on violence against women with disabilities


Beirut-Cairo, 12 November 2018(Communication and Information Unit)--As a continuation of their work to address violence against women in Egypt, the National Council for Women (NCW) organized a consultation on 6 November in Cairo to discuss practical steps towards carrying out a national study on violence against women with disabilities. The study will seek to better understand the experiences and types of violence that women with disabilities in Egypt are suffering.

Meeting participants included representatives of the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS), the National Council for Disability Affairs, the Ministry of Social Solidarity, the Ministry of Health and Population, UN Women, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the UN Development Programme and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA).

Due to its multidisciplinary nature, the ESCWA Centre for Women, as well as the Social Development and Statistics Divisions have provided technical support to the NCW and CAPMAS in the areas of data collection and statistics, gender-based violence and the social inclusion of persons with disabilities. This meeting was the second such consultation facilitated by ESCWA to determine the parameters and methodology of the study.

Disability is a risk factor for abuse and maltreatment, and when compounded with gender, women and girls with disabilities are at an increased risk of violence. ESCWA representatives outlined some of these risk factors, including women and girls with disabilities being perceived as ‘problems’ or ‘charity cases’ by others, having difficulty escaping violence, being dependent on others for care or financial support, lacking credibility and having lower self-esteem. The rate of abuse is often higher among women with psychosocial or intellectual disabilities, or those who have difficulty communicating. It is more difficult for women and girls with disabilities to report abuse, the services available for victims are often not accessible, and service and health providers of are often unaware of how to best assist women and girls with disabilities.

For these reasons, this unique study in the Arab region will be both groundbreaking and illuminating, so that government officials, non-governmental organizations and UN agencies can better understand the problems which women and girls with disabilities in Egypt are facing so that they can work to reduce violence and improve the existing services and reporting mechanisms for victims of violence.

For further information about the meeting please contact Ms. Nada Darwazeh ( and Ms. Angela Zettler (


For more information:
Nabil Abu-Dargham, Head, ESCWA Communication and Information Unit
+961-70-993-144; email:
Ms Rania Harb +961-70-008-879; email:
Ms Mirna Mahfouz:  +961-70-872-372; email: