Statement from USICD President Marca Bristo on the day of US signing

July 30, 2009


Today President Obama has furthered America’s leadership and commitment to human rights in the world by announcing his intent to sign the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. It is estimated that 650 million people – ten percent of the global population – are denied basic human rights because they have disabilities.  They are isolated and imprisoned, sometime literally in cages, often without access to the legal systems or a voice of any kind.

The United States set an example for the world by passing the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and President Obama has again made the United States a beacon of hope for every disabled person who suffers a sub-human existence anywhere in the world.

This convention pushes the global community to strive to be better at respecting the rights of people with disabilities, as it reminds us in America to continue to strive to meet the high goals we have set for ourselves. We urge the Senate to approach ratification of the accord in the same bi-partisan spirit that led to the passage of the ADA.