The United States has signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities July 30, 2009.
"Countries that join in the Convention engage themselves to develop and carry out policies, laws and administrative measures for securing the rights recognized in the Convention and abolish laws, regulations, customs and practices that constitute discrimination (Article 4)." -enable
One of the things I think is very powerful and I'm pleased to see is the explicit mention of a paradigm shift. In an explanatory Powerpoint, "The Convention marks a 'paradigm shift' in attitudes and approaches to persons with disabilities. Persons with disabilities are not viewed as "objects" of charity, medical treatment and social protection; rather as "subjects" with rights, who are capable of claiming those rights and making decisions for their lives based on their free and informed consent as well as being active members of society. "
Some of the General Principles include
- "Respect for inherent dignity, individual autonomy including the freedom to make one's own choices, and independence of persons.
- Full and effective participation and inclusion in society
- Equality between men and women
- Respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabiliites and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities
- reasonable [sic] accommodation must be made for persons with disabilities
- Living independently and being included in the community
- Information and communication services
- Habilitation and rehabilitation
- Work and employment - human resource policies and practices
- Adequate standard of living and social protection
- Participation in cultural life, recreation, leisure, and sport"
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