Given the ambitious and far ranging nature of the Sustainable Development Goals, institutions such as the High-Level Political Forum and the Major Groups system are essential. United Nations member states alone cannot not possibly hope to meet the Sustainable Development Goals without substantial engagement with non-state actors, and the High-Level Political Forum and the Major Groups system exists to facilitate that engagement. By having regular meetings of government officials in the form of the High-Level Political Forum states can engage with each other, and with stakeholders from around the world. The innovation of having the Major Groups system to facilitate engagement by civil society in an organized and coherent way will be critical to achieving the “sustainable” portion of the Sustainable Development Goals.
One piece missing from the Major Groups system is specific engagement with persons with disabilities. Although it could be said that disability would cut across the existing nine stakeholder groups: Women, Children and Youth, Indigenous Peoples, Non-Governmental Organizations, Local Authorities, Workers and Trade Unions, Business and Industry, Scientific and Technological Community, and Farmers, the addition of a stakeholder group specifically for persons with disabilities would greatly enhance the “sustainable” aspect of the Sustainable Development Goals because disabled persons compose such are large portion of the world population. The diversity of disabilities limiting individuals’ opportunities for participation in economic and civic life would also make having a Major Group focused on disability beneficial for achieving sustainable development.