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U.N. Convention on the
Rights of Persons with Disabilities

About the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

"The existing human rights system was meant to promote and protect the rights of persons with disabilities, but the existing standards and mechanisms have in fact failed to provide adequate protection to the specific cases of persons with disabilities. It is clearly time for the UN to remedy this shortcoming."

Louise Arbour, United Nations Human Rights Commissioner

"What the Convention endeavours to do, is to elaborate in detail the rights of persons with disabilities and set out a code of implementation."

Don MacKay, Chair of the committee that negotiated the treaty

How will the new convention help persons with disabilities?
Throughout history, persons with disabilities have been viewed as individuals who require societal protection and evoke sympathy rather than respect. This convention is a major step toward changing the perception of disability and ensures that societies recognize that all people must be provided with the opportunities to live life to their fullest potential, whatever that may be.

What does the convention cover?
The purpose of the convention is to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights by persons with disabilities. It covers a number of key areas such as accessibility, personal mobility, health, education, employment, habilitation and rehabilitation, participation in political life, and equality and non-discrimination. The convention marks a shift in thinking about disability from a social welfare concern, to a human rights issue, which acknowledges that societal barriers and prejudices are themselves disabling.

How can this website help me implement the convention?
The GLADNET website provides resources such as checklists, brochures, tools and information sheets (in English) on disability, training, work and employment, as well as good practices and contacts in these areas .

Where can I find more information about this convention?
The official United Nations website for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities provides links to the full text of the convention, answers to commonly asked questions about the convention, as well as helpful links for the media.