Sierra Leone Ratifies the CRPD

October 4, 2010

Sierra Leone has joined the group of 94 other countries that have ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  The country officially ratified the Convention on Monday, October 4, 2010.  It has yet to ratify the Convention's Optional Protocol.

The CRPD is the first international, legally binding human rights treaty targeted at protecting the human rights of people with disabilities.  A few examples of the human rights that the CRPD protects include, but are not limited to:

  • The right to be protected from abuse, violence, and torture
  • The right to live in the community, with one's family, without being institutionalized against one's will
  • The right to have access to education, transportation, and other public services
  • The right to access information and communication, including via sign language or Braille
  • The right to employment and a decent standard of living
  • The right to access social justice

Ratifying a treaty commits a country to implementing it.  This may mean the country needs to modify existing laws, or abolish old laws, to be more consistent with the treaty. 

From among the 147 signatories of the CRPD, 95 have now taken the next step by ratifying the treaty.  Of these, 58 also have ratified the Optional Protoco, which gives people with disabilities in ratifying countries an additional avenue for pursuing justice if all other standard methods for pursuing justice within their country should fail.

Learn more about the CRPD and Optional Protocol at the United Nations Enable website.  Learn more about efforts to ratify the CRPD in the United States by exploring the website for the United States International Council on Disabilities (USICD).