Israel violates the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, to which the country has signed, according to a report by around 30 organizations representing people with disabilities and other social rights groups to the United Nations committee, which is responsible for compliance with the Convention monitors.
According to the report sent on Thursday to mark International Disabled People’s Day, Israel persistently violates some articles, such as the right to independent living (Article 19) or to an inclusive education system (Article 24), which has the commitments made in other articles only partially fulfilled. Israel signed the convention in 2007 and ratified it in 2012.
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In contrast to the Justice Department’s official report, the Social Rights Organizations unofficial report pointed to large gaps between the articles and the status quo. The alternative report also notes the lack of a comprehensive plan to reduce the gaps.
The alternative report looks at the situation of people with disabilities on several levels – including equality, access to justice, health, employment and respect for privacy. At the end of each chapter, the authors suggest that the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities request targeted, detailed responses from Israel, rather than relying on the government’s “very partial and missing” report.
“The results show that there are still many intolerable obstacles that prevent disabled people from fully participating in society,” said Odelia Fitoussi, who was selected this week as a member of the UN committee and sits on the board of Bizchut, an organization is working for the rights of disabled people in Israel.
Fitoussi, along with Bizchut’s Director of Policy Monitoring and Implementation, Idit Saragusti, and disabled social activist Yoav Kraim, say people with disabilities still do not fully and equally enjoy human rights and fundamental freedoms as the Convention mandates and continue to do so suffer from discrimination, marginalization and denial of rights despite significant advances over the past 30 years.
The official and alternative reports present two different worlds. For example, Article 19 of the Convention states that everyone has the right to live independently and to be accepted into the community “with decisions that are equal to others” and that the parties to the Convention “shall take effective and proportionate measures to ensure that full enjoyment by enabling people with disabilities of this right. “While the official report cites Israeli legislation without mentioning the segregated dwellings rejected by the convention or the number of people living in such dwellings, the alternative report notes that in practice Israel has the right to independent living in hurt the community. It should be noted that the “Community Housing and Personal Assistance Package” section of the Disability Equality Act has never been regulated due to government opposition.
On the subject of matching items
“Almost 20,000 people with disabilities still live in institutions without the ability to make basic decisions, such as: For example, with whom they live in the room, when they go to sleep and what they will eat, ”says Saragusti. “And this does not even lead to the widespread phenomenon of abuse, neglect and violence against people with disabilities in some institutions.”
The alternative report identifies other violations related to access to the general education system, as well as transport, information and communication, technology and other publicly provided services. The government report details the various accessibility regulations, but omits two fundamental shortcomings. Although implementation of all regulations should be completed by 2006, some of them have not yet been implemented (such as access to stairs or public transport on intercity routes), mainly because of the high cost they incur. In addition, the target dates for approved regulations have repeatedly been postponed. The government is currently working on another postponement to the end of 2022.
Above much of the criticism hovers a lack of data needed to formulate and implement guidelines. The government relies primarily on the National Statistical Office’s social survey. The authors of the alternative report state, however, that it only represents a partial picture, also because institutional residents and people “who cannot answer because of their disability” are excluded.
The Justice Department replied: “Israel is committed to complying with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Israel presented a preliminary report on the implementation of the Convention in 2017, which was compiled on the basis of information received from the relevant state ministries and political bodies. Despite the positive work of the state, various challenges remain and we must promote the rights of people with disabilities. “The ministry added that the UN committee recently presented a list of subjects on which it requested a written response, which it is currently compiling.