Jordan and Disability Rights: A Pioneering Leader in the Arab World

Main Article Content

Kenneth R. Rutherford


disability rights, Jordan, Middle East


This article investigates Jordan’s rationale for assuming a leadership role on the disability rights issue in the Arab World. Tens of millions of people, including over ten percent of Arab families, are impacted and impoverished because of disability. To address this substantial challenge, the Jordan Royal family has leveraged Jordan’s tradition of openness and generosity coupled with one of the best educational systems in the Arab World to promote disability issues.  As a result, Jordan is recognized by the international community as leading the Arab World in promoting disability rights. Jordan’s international and regional leadership on disability rights was recognized in 2005 when Jordan received the Franklin Delano Roosevelt International Disability Award.

Abstract 1289 | PDF Downloads 804 Word Downloads 171 Text Downloads 177


Al Abed, M. (2005, May 20). VTC to supply Saudi Arabia with 1,000 trainers. Jordan Times, 30(8979), 3.

Jordan’s endorsement of Arab charter for human rights commended. (2005, February 11-12). Jordan Times, 30(8896), 2.

Jordanian Hashemite Fund for Human Development. (1999). The Jordanian Hashemite Fund for human development: Where people build the future.

King in US: Jordan going ahead with reform. (2005, March 20). Jordan Times, 30(8927), 1.

King calls for speedy implementation of National Strategy for People with Disabilities. (2007, February 8). Jordan Times.

Rogan, E. (1999). Frontiers of the State in the Late Ottoman Empire: Transjordan, 1850-1921. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Saudi delegation negotiating contracts with 500 Jordanian medics. (2005, March 6). Jordan Times, 30(8915), 3.

World Bank Group. (2003). GenderStats: Database of gender statistics. Retrieved February 5, 2007, from

World Bank Group. (2005, September). Jordan Country Brief.

World Bank Human Development Department. (2002, June 30). Note on disability issues in the Middle East and North Africa.