(MENAFN – Kashmiri Observer)
The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Of M Ahmad
WORLDWIDE one billion people have a disability. Many people with disabilities experience a number of barriers to education, health care, and other basic services. In many countries they are exposed to violence and discrimination. People with disabilities are also often denied their right to a self-determined life.
To protect the rights of people with disabilities, the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRP) was adopted on December 13, 2006 at the United Nations headquarters in New York. The purpose of the Convention is to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities and to promote respect for their innate dignity. The convention follows decades of work by the United Nations to change attitudes and approaches towards people with disabilities. It reaches a new high point in the movement from viewing people with disabilities as “objects” of charity to viewing “subjects” with rights who are able to claim those rights and make decisions for their lives based on their free rights and to meet informed consent as well as active members of society. It clarifies and qualifies how all categories of rights apply to people with disabilities and identifies areas in which adaptations have been made or their rights have been violated and where the protection of rights needs to be strengthened.
The Charter of the United Nations reaffirms the essentiality of “universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction …” People with disabilities have the right to exercise their civil, political, social, economic and cultural rights on an equal basis with others in the context of all international treaties. The full participation of people with disabilities benefits society as their individual contribution and enriches all areas of life.
The guiding principles of the Convention are:
1. Respect for innate dignity, individual autonomy, including the freedom to make decisions, and the independence of people with disabilities.
2. Non-discrimination against people with disabilities.
3. Full and effective participation and integration of people with disabilities in society.
4. Respect for diversity and acceptance of people with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity.
5. Equal opportunities for people with disabilities.
6. Accessibility facilities for people with disabilities.
7. Equality between men and women with disabilities
8. Respect for the developing skills of children with disabilities and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities
9. Recognize and enforce the right of people with disabilities to live independently, to be accepted into the community and to choose where and with whom they live.
10. Ensure that social security policies protect the incomes of disabled people and their families and take into account the additional costs associated with being disabled.
11. Remove barriers to ensure that people with disabilities have access to decent work and equal pay.
12. Take measures to combat negative or discriminatory stereotypes or prejudices against people with disabilities in public and in the media
13. Ensure equal rights for disabled people through adequate legal advice and support.
14. Involvement of disabled people and disabled people’s organizations in the planning and implementation of all laws and guidelines that affect disabled people.
15. Incorporate the CRPD into national law to ensure that people can take legal action when their rights have been violated.
The aim of the UN CRPD is the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, “to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities and to promote respect for their innate dignity”.
- The author is Principal (I / C) Abhedananda Home-Higher Secondary Institution for Specially-able Children, Solina, Rambagh, Srinagar, Kashmir- email: [email protected] )
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