NDRN and the P&A System Calls on the U.S. Senate to Quickly Ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
For Immediate Release
Contact: David Card
202.408.9514 x122 firstname.lastname@example.org
Washington, D.C. – The National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) and the federally mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) agencies call on the Senate to quickly provide its advice and consent to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). NDRN is the national membership association for the P&A agencies that are located in every state and territory. The P&A agencies provide advocacy services to persons with disabilities and their unique role is mentioned in the ratification package multiple times given their role as the largest provider of legally-based advocacy services to persons with disabilities in the United States. The P&A System recognizes that the CRPD seeks the same goals that the United States had twenty-two years ago in enacting the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“The United States has been a global leader in disability rights, having passed with overwhelming bi-partisan support the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990, more than a decade before the CRPD, and more recently the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act in 2008. We call on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the full Senate to act quickly to ratify the CRPD under the same bi-partisanship by which it passed the ADA and ADA Amendments Act,” stated Curt Decker, Executive Director of the National Disability Rights Network.
The CRPD protects and ensures the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities, and promotes the respect for their inherent dignity. The CRPD is consistent with U.S. laws such as the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
“Senate ratification of the treaty is an important first step towards enabling the United States to more deeply engage the international community on disability rights,” said David Hutt, Senior Staff Attorney with the National Disability Rights Network and Co-Chair of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities International Task Force. Only nations which have ratified the CRPD can participate in official conferences to discuss how the CRPD is to be interpreted, vote to appoint members to the CRPD Committee, and work with other nations who are party to the treaty in protecting the rights of persons with disabilities. Sixty-seven Senators must vote in favor of the CRPD for the United States to ratify and legally become a party to the treaty under international law.
NDRN urges the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to quickly vote the treaty out of Committee and for the full Senate to ratify the treaty in order to restore the United States to a global leadership position on human rights for persons with disabilities. To date 116 countries and the European Union have ratified the CRPD, including Australia, Canada, Brazil, France, Germany, India, the Philippines, and the United Kingdom.