The United Nations General Assembly, at its thirty-first session in 1976, designated 1981 as the International Year for Disabled Persons (IYDP) and urged all nations to give their attention to measures and programs that would help the disabled.
An 18-cent commemorative stamp honoring the IYDP was issued June 29, 1981, in Milford, Michigan. The stamp was intended to reinforce programs that encourage and assist disabled persons. Designed by Martha Perske of Darien, Connecticut, and modeled by Ronald C. Sharpe, the stamp features a man in a wheelchair operating a sophisticated microscope and is strengthened by the words, "Disabled doesn't mean Unable." This was Ms. Perske's first stamp design.
The stamp was printed in the photogravure process, with fifty stamps per pane.
Postal Bulletin (June 4, 1981).