Interational Disability Alliance Update for March 2010

March 26, 2010

IDA Disability Rights Bulletin (March 2010)

Global News

CRPD Ratifications reach 83

The ratifications of the CRPD by France, Latvia, Canada, and Bosnia and Herzegovina have increased to 83 the number of States Parties to the CRPD, which means that the CRPD Committee will increase from 12 to 18 members in 2011. Ratification by France and Bosnia and Herzegovina of the Optional Protocol (OP) increased to 52 the number of the States Parties to the OP. The signature of the OP by Latvia increases to 88 the number of signatures to the OP, while the Convention has 144 signatures.

The Commission for Social Development

The Commission for Social Development held its 48th Session from February 3-12, 2010. During this Session, the Commission adopted a Resolution on “Mainstreaming disability in the development agenda”. Please click here to access this resolution and click here for detailed information on the rights of persons with disabilities in the 48th session of the Commission.

Elections for the CRPD Committee
As a result of States Parties having reached the threshold of 80, the number of Committee members will increase from twelve to eighteen. The election of the six new members and the renewal of the terms of six of the CRPD Committee members (those whose term expires in 2010), will occur during the Third Conference of States Parties, which will take place from September 1-3, 2010.

According to the CRPD, the Secretary General of the UN will send a letter four months prior to the Conference of States Parties asking States Parties to nominate candidates.

IDA has prepared a number of documents explaining the process as well as a questionnaire to be filled in by candidates, which was already used for the first election process. Please click here to access these documents.

IDA will include in its website, information on those nominations that have been decided at national level.

Treaty Bodies
The 3rd session of the CRPD Committee Ttook place in Geneva from February 22-26, 2010. During this session, the Committee adopted its Rules of Procedure and Working Methods, which will be published shortly. Moreover, three working groups were established, one of them to produce a General Comment on Article 12 of the CRPD on legal capacity, a second to prepare the Day of General Discussion to be held at the next session, which will focus on Article 9: Accessibility, and finally, a third that will focus on the situation of persons with disabilities in situations of natural disaster, starting with Haiti.

In order to address the issue of individual communications under the Optional Protocol to the Convention, the Committee elected by consensus Ms. María Soledad Cisternas as Special Rapporteur on Communications.

The 45th Session of the CEDAW Committee considered from January 18 – February 5, 2010, reports from Botswana, Egypt, Malawi, Netherlands, Panama, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. To have access to the disability analysis of the Concluding Observations adopted by the Committee during this session, please click the link.

The 76th Session of the CERD Committee considered from February 15 – March 12, 2010, reports from Argentina, Cambodia, Cameroon, Guatemala, Iceland, Japan, Monaco, Netherlands, Panama, Slovak Republic and Kazakhstan. There are no references to the rights of persons with disabilities in the Concluding Observations adopted by the Committee.

IDA addressed the Human Rights Committee on the first day of its 98th session, which is currently taking place in New York. Please click here for the IDA statement.

Universal Periodic Review

The UPR Working Group has held its 7th session from February 8 – 19, 2010. In this session, the following countries were reviewed: Qatar; Nicaragua; Italy; El Salvador; Gambia; Bolivia; Fiji; San Marino; Kazakhstan; Angola; Iran; Madagascar; Iraq; Slovenia; Egypt, and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

For an analysis of the references to persons with disabilities in the UPR Working Group reports, please click the link.

13th Session of the Human Rights Council (March 1 – 26, 2010)

Panel on the rights of persons with disabilities
On March 5th 2010, the Human Rights Council held its annual interactive debate on the rights of persons with disabilities, which focused this year on the structure and role of national mechanisms for the implementation and monitoring of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Ms. Regina Atalla, President of RIADIS (Red Latinoamericana de Organizaciones no Gubernamentales de Personas con Discapacidad y sus Familias), member of the International Disability Alliance (IDA), was one of the panelists of this event.

For detailed information on this panel, please click here and to have access to the full statement made by Ms. Regina Atalla (on behalf of IDA), please click her name.

Parallel event on article 32 of the CRPD

In the afternoon of March 5th 2010, the Permanent Missions of Mexico and New Zealand, together with IDA, co-sponsored a parallel event on Article 32 of the CRPD, focusing on international cooperation.

For detailed information on this event, please click the link.

Resolution on the rights of persons with disabilities and other resolutions
The Human Rights Council has adopted a resolution, co-sponsored by Mexico and New Zealand, on the rights of persons with disabilities.

The resolution reinforces some main elements from article 33 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on the important role of national frameworks and monitoring mechanisms, and welcomes the OHCHR study that was done on this topic. The resolution requests that the next OHCHR thematic study focus on article 32 on international cooperation.

Click here to find the final text of this resolution and other resolutions adopted by this session of the Human Rights Council, which include references to persons with disabilities regarding: Adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living in the context of the hosting of mega-events; Situation of human rights in the Democratic People´s Republic of Korea; Human rights and arbitrary deprivation of nationality; The right to food; and, Rights of the child: the fight against sexual violence against children.

References to persons with disabilities

IDA has monitored the references to persons with disabilities at meetings of the Human Rights Council. Please click here for these references.


On March 3, 2010 the Standing Committee of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) held a side event on persons with disabilities. The UNHCR Secretariat has prepared a draft conclusion focused on persons with disabilities, which will start to be negotiated on March 29.

About the IDA Disability Rights Bulletin

This bulletin is intended for experts advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities, in particular within the Geneva-based human rights framework. It is prepared by the IDA, which also provides support to the Group of States Friends of the CRPD.

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