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Aug-03-2013 15:49printcomments

US: Ratify Disability Rights Treaty

Parties to the Convention are required to promote, protect, and ensure the full enjoyment of human rights by persons with disabilities and ensure that they enjoy full equality under the law.

UN Convention on Disabilities
Courtesy: independentsentinel.com

(YORK, UK) - Human Rights Ambassador William Nicholas Gomes Has sent a letter to US senators, urging them to mark the 23rd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act by ratifying the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is an international human rights instrument of the United Nations intended to protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities. Parties to the Convention are required to promote, protect, and ensure the full enjoyment of human rights by persons with disabilities and ensure that they enjoy full equality under the law. The Convention has served as the major catalyst in the global movement from viewing persons with disabilities as objects of charity, medical treatment and social protection towards viewing them as full and equal members of society, with human rights. It is also the only UN human rights instrument with an explicit development dimension. The Convention was the first human rights treaty of the new Millennium.

There are eight guiding principles that underlie the Convention:

  1. Respect for inherent dignity, individual autonomy including the freedom to make one's own choices, and independence of persons
  2. Non-discrimination
  3. Full and effective participation and inclusion in society
  4. Respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity
  5. Equality of opportunity
  6. Accessibility
  7. Equality between men and women
  8. Respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabilities and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities


The Honorable Robert Menendez
Chairman Committee on Foreign Relations
United States Senate
528 Senate Hart Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Bob Corker
Ranking Member
Committee on Foreign Relations
United States Senate
425 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Re: US Ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Dear Chairman Menendez and Ranking Member Corker:

I am William Nicholas Gomes, Human Rights Ambassador for Salem-News.com.

I am writing to strongly urge you to vote for ratification ofthe Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). With adoption of the treaty, the United States would have an important opportunity to strengthen its leadership on the rights of persons with disabilities at home and abroad.

US leadership has been influential in putting disability rights on the international agenda. The landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) inspired disability advocates and individuals with disabilities around the world, and served as a model for foreign countries in drafting their own disability laws. The CRPD itself was inspired by and modeled on the ADA, and the US provided important technical assistance during the convention’s negotiation and drafting.

Like the ADA, the CRPD embodies the basic principles of individual dignity and autonomy, non-discrimination, full inclusion and participation in society, equality of opportunity, accessibility, and respect for difference. The legal standards articulated by the CRPD are largely aligned with US disability law. While the ADA remains critically important, ratification of the CRPD would represent a global reaffirmation of US commitment to the values embodied in US disability legislation and provide a clear legal framework to advance and promote the rights of persons with disabilities around the world.

US ratification is a critical step toward achieving the Americanvision to empower people with disabilities worldwide to achieve economic self-sufficiency, independent living, full public participation, and inclusion and integration into society. More than 600 American disability organizations, nearly 40 faith-based organizations, and more than 20 veterans services organizations support US ratification of the CRPD. Ratifying the CRPD would also help to protect the rights and facilitate access for US citizens with disabilities and their loved ones who travel, live, or work abroad. Taking this important step would enable the United States to share its experience and actively participate in international efforts aimed at overcoming discrimination, barriers, and challenges faced by people with disabilities.

Without further delay, the United States should ratify the CRPD and join the other 133 countries in protecting the rights of over one billion people with disabilities worldwide.

Most respectfully,
William Nicholas Gomes
Human Rights Ambassador for Salem-News.com
Twitter@wnicholasgomes
www.williamnicholasgomes.com

http://williamnicholasgomes.com/

Salem-News.com Human Rights Ambassador William Nicholas Gomes is a Bangladeshi journalist, human rights activist and author was born on 25 December, 1985 in Dhaka. As an investigative journalist he wrote widely for leading European and Asian media outlets.

He is also active in advocating for free and independent media and journalists’ rights, and is part of the free media movement, Global Independent Media Center – an activist media network for the creation of radical, accurate, and passionate telling of the truth. He worked for Italian news agency Asianews.it from year 2009 to 2011, on that time he was accredited as a free lance journalist by the press information department of Bangladesh. During this time he has reported a notable numbers of reports for the news agency which were translated into Chinese and Italian and quoted by notable number of new outlets all over the world.He, ideologically, identifies himself deeply attached with anarchism. His political views are often characterized as “leftist” or “left-wing,” and he has described himself as an individualist anarchist.

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