UN Enable Newsletter, October 2011


The Enable Newsletter is prepared by the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (SCRPD) at the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) with input from UN offices, agencies, funds and programmes, as well as from civil society. It is also available online at: http://www.un.org/disabilities.

In this issue:


106 ratifications of the Convention

153 signatories to the Convention

Optional Protocol to the Convention

63 ratifications of the Optional Protocol

90 signatories to the Optional Protocol

Current session of the General Assembly and disability issues

The 66th session of the UN General Assembly is considering two reports of the Secretary-General on the โ€œStatus of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and its Optional Protocolโ€ (A/66/121) and the โ€œRealization of the Millennium Development Goals and other internationally agreed development goals for persons with disabilitiesโ€ (A/66/128). The Third Committee of the Assembly, which addresses economic, social and cultural issues, is currently negotiating three draft resolutions related to disability that will be presented at the plenary of the Assembly for adoption. The resolution entitled โ€œHigh-level meeting on disability and developmentโ€ will decide the convening of the high-level meeting of the General Assembly.The Committee is also discussing a resolution entitled โ€œConvention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Optional Protocol theretoโ€ that addresses issues related to the implementation of the CRPD and the additional session-time requested by the CRPD Committee. The Government of Brazil has also sponsored a resolution to designate 21 March as โ€œWorld Down Syndrome Dayโ€ from 2012. Updates and status on these three resolutions will be posted on the Enable website and also published in the next Enable Newsletter. More information: http://www.un.org/disabilities.

International Day of Persons with Disabilities, 3 December 2011

This year, International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) will be commemorated to draw attention to key areas to mainstream disability in all development processes. The theme for 2011 is: โ€œTogether for a better world for all: Including persons with disabilities in developmentโ€. This year will also mark the 30th Anniversary of the UN International Year of Disabled Persons (1981). Commemorative events at UN Headquarters will be held on Friday, 2 December and include two panel discussions entitled, โ€œTowards inclusive development: improving data and statistics on disabilityโ€ and โ€œMainstreaming disability in the global development agenda: experience in other development issuesโ€. If your organization is commemorating IDPD 2011 at a local community event in collaboration with your Government, a UN agency or other stakeholders, please let us know about it. We can showcase your event on our website to inform and inspire others. More information: http://www.un.org/disabilities/default.asp?id=1561.

United Nations Enable Film Festival

After the IDPD panel discussions above, short disability-related films will be screened as part of the United Nations Enable Film Festival (UNEFF). Since 2009, a selection of short disability-related films is screened at UN Headquarters as a part of the commemorative activities for the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Films are selected on the basis of their content and message to help raise awareness of disability issues and further promote the full and effective participation of persons with disabilities in society. If you know of a short film that can help achieve this objective and is also suitable to be presented to a diverse international audience, please send us information and a copy of the film for consideration by the UNEFF Film Committee. More information: http://www.un.org/disabilities/default.asp?id=1562

DESA - Strengthening NGO participation in the work of the UN

The DESA NGO (non-governmental organization) Branch launched a new brochure "Working with ECOSOC - an NGOs Guide to Consultative Status". The brochure provides essential information on how to obtain consultative status, get UN grounds passes, participate in events, as well as detailed information on all application processes. Download a copy at: http://csonet.org/?menu=100. Also, read the latest news and upcoming intergovernmental meetings of interest to NGOs with ECOSOC consultative status at http://csonet.org/content/documents/lateste.pdf.

DESA - Launch of the International Year of Cooperatives 2012

The International Year of Cooperatives (IYC) was launched on 31 October. Mandated by the General Assembly, IYC will work to increase public awareness about cooperatives and their contributions to advance people-centered development and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. Find out more about how it can be used to further improve the participation and well-being of persons with disabilities in society and development. More information: http://social.un.org/coopsyear/.

UN DPI - UN Secretary-General meets representatives of NGOs

On 26 October, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met with representatives of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in consultative status with ECOSOC or associated with DPI in a special briefing to present his vision and priorities for the second term. The event was organized by the UN Department of Public Information (UNDPI) that organizes regular briefings and other services for civil society, as well as annual conference, which is the premier event for civil society in the UN. This year the 64th Annual UN DPI/NGO Conference took place in Bonn, Germany, 3-5 September, with some 1,300 NGOs in attendance. More information: http://www.un.org/wcm/content/site/dpingorelations/home/events/briefings/Fall2011/26oct2011.

UNIC Moscow โ€“ Addressing stigma and disability

The UN Information Centre (UNIC) in Moscow held an event in support of the CRPD and the disability-rights agenda on October 18 at โ€œKhudojestvennyโ€, a historic landmark theatre in Moscow.The event launched the screening of โ€œKleimoโ€ (The Stigma), a documentary on stigma and disability produced by Artvideo Studio with the support of Perspektiva, a leading disability NGO in Russia. More information: http://www.unic.ru.

UNESCAP - Conference on Disability-Inclusive MDGs and Aid Effectiveness

The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) in collaboration with Leonard Cheshire Disability will organize the โ€œConference on Disability-Inclusive MDGs and Aid Effectivenessโ€ from 12 to 14 March 2012 in Bangkok, Thailand. This is the second Conference in a series of global forums that will bring together UN agencies, disabled peopleโ€™s organizations and academics. The event also provides a unique opportunity to identify and develop innovative ways to mainstream disability in the international development cooperation. It will also act as a platform for exchanging lessons learned and ways to improve the quality and effectiveness of development cooperation through the inclusion of persons with disabilities. Recommendations will feed into the regional preparatory process towards the conclusion of the Second Asian and Pacific Decade of Disabled Persons in 2012. A call for papers is also open. More information: http://www.lcint.org/?lid=5732.

OHCHR - Guidelines for submitting individual complaints now made public

The CRPD fact sheet and guidelines for submission of communications under the Optional Protocol are now available to the general public. The "Fact sheet on the procedure for submitting communications to the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities under the Optional Protocol to the Convention", and "Guidelines for submission of communications to the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities under the Optional Protocol to the Convention" are available on the OHCHR website at http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/CRPD/CRPD-C-5-2_en.doc and http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/CRPD/CRPD-C-5-3_en.doc, respectively.

UNICEF โ€“ New booklet on CEDAW for adolescents

UNICEF has prepared a brief booklet for adolescent girls and boys, ages 13-18 years, to learn about the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). CEDAW includes all girls and women from all backgrounds and ages, including girls with disabilities. The booklet shows that both the Convention on the Rights of the Child and CEDAW are designed to advance the rights of girls and women at all stages of their lives. More information: http://www.unicef.org/gender/files/CEDAW_In_Brief_For_Adolescent-Web_Version.pdf.

UNFPA โ€“ Report on the rights of persons with disabilities

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) published a brief report on its work with partners at global and country levels on the promotion and protection of the rights of persons with disabilities. The report documents the efforts, progress and obstacles encountered in the implementation of General Assembly resolutions to support the promotion and protection of the rights of persons with disabilities. It also provides information on its work at the regional level and highlights challenges in implementing the resolutions and the CRPD. More information: http://www.unfpa.org/rights/Disabilities_Report.pdf.

UNFPA โ€“ State of the World Population 2011 - 7 billion people

The worldโ€™s population topped seven billion people on 31 October 2011. A world population of seven billion has implications for sustainability, urbanization, access to health services and much more. Of the 7 billion, one billion persons experience some form of disability. This year's State of World Population report, entitled โ€œPeople and Possibilities in a World of 7 Billionโ€, looks at the dynamics behind the numbers. It also documents actions that people in vastly different countries and circumstances are taking in their own communities to make the most of their world. The report makes the case for sound planning and investing in human development. More information: http://www.unfpa.org/swp.

UNDP - Human Development Report 2011

The 2011 Human Development Report (HDR) โ€œSustainability and Equity: A Better Future for Allโ€ argues that the urgent global challenges of sustainability and equity must be addressed together. It identifies policies on the national and global level that could spur mutually reinforcing progress towards these interlinked goals. The Report launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) shows how the worldโ€™s marginalized people suffer the most from environmental degradation, including in their immediate personal environment, and disproportionately lack political power, making it all the harder for the world community to reach agreement on needed global policy changes. Download the Report at: http://hdr.undp.org/en/reports/global/hdr2011/

ILO - Video promotes disability inclusion

The International Labour Organization (ILO) launched a video entitled โ€œEveryone's right to be includedโ€ to promote disability inclusion. A majority of persons with disabilities often feel excluded at school, from public services and in the labour market. This video shows why it's important to ensure the inclusion of women and men with disabilities in our societies. More information: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XSzuh_Wf6uM

UNV - Volunteering matters

United Nations Volunteersโ€™ campaign โ€œVolunteering Matters: Light Up Your Worldโ€ is designed to involve as many volunteers as possible through an interactive webpage, combining videos, a photo competition and bold social media engagement. Volunteers have the power to change lives. They build social cohesion, enhance civic participation, mitigate conflict and contribute to a societyโ€™s well-being. International Volunteer Day (IVD) is on 5 December 2011 and will also mark the culmination of the Tenth Anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers (IYV+10). More information: http://volunteeringmatters.unv.org.


(We welcome information from the general public on key international disability events for inclusion in the list below.)

7 to 9 November: 4th International Congress on Rehabilitation and Inclusion

The Fourth International Congress of the AVAPEs on Rehabilitation and Inclusion: Social Technologies, Sharing Global Trends will be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The congress will introduce recognized social trends and technologies through exhibitions, panels, roundtables and workshops. More information: http://www.riglobal.org/learn-more/our-work/events.

19 November: Galway Genetic Discrimination Conference

The Centre for Disability Law and Policy is co-hosting along with the Burton Blatt Institute, Syracuse University, a one-day Conference entitled โ€œGenetic Discrimination- Transatlantic Perspectives on the case for a European Level Legal Response.The conference will take place at the National University of Ireland, Galway. More information: http://www.conference.ie/Conferences/menu.asp?menu=771&Conference=13929

29 November to 1 December: 2nd Asia Pacific CBR Congress

The 2nd Asia Pacific Community-Based Rehabilitation (CBR) Congress will be held in Manila, Philippines. Topics on the agenda include: the role of Disabled Persons Organizations (DPOs) in CBR, harmonizing the CRPD with domestic laws, accessibility, the WHO CBR Guidelines, etc. More information: http://www.ncda.gov.ph.

3 December: International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2011

(See item under Highlights, above)

5 December: International Volunteer Day

International Volunteer Day (IVD) provides an opportunity for volunteer-involving organizations to work with Government agencies, non-profit organizations, community groups and the private sector - at local, national and international levels - for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This is the ten-year anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers, More information: http://www.worldvolunteerweb.org/intl-vol-day.html.

5 to 6 December: M-Enabling Summit

The M-Enabling Summit, Global Summit and Showcase for Mobile Applications and Services for Seniors and Persons with Disabilities, is the first global programme solely dedicated to participants in the emerging ecosystem for mobile accessible and assistive technologies, applications and services. The Summit will provide Governments, community services, health and private sector information and communications professionals with innovative solutions to leverage accessible and assistive mobile platforms. More information: http://www.m-enabling.com.

1 to 10 February 2012: 50th session of the Commission for Social Development

The priority theme of this yearโ€™s session will be poverty eradication. The Commission will have before it the Report of the Secretary-General on Mainstreaming Disability in the Development Agenda, as well as the Report of the Special Rapporteur on Disability of the Commission for Social Development on monitoring of the implementation of the Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities for Person with Disabilities. More information: http://social.un.org/index/CommissionforSocialDevelopment.aspx

27 February to 9 March: 56th session of the Commission on the Status of Women

The two-week session will include a high-level round table, interactive dialogues and panels and parallel events. This year's session will focus on the empowerment of rural women and their role in poverty and hunger eradication, development and current challenges, as well as financing for gender equality and the empowerment of women. More information: http://www.unwomen.org/how-we-work/csw/

26 to 27 March: 28th Annual Pacific Rim International Conference on Disability and Diversity

โ€œLiving to our complete potentialโ€ โ€“ the 28th Annual Pacific Rim International Conference on Disability and Diversity will be held in Honolulu, Hawaii. It will bring together academics, community leaders, self advocates, specialists and Government officials. The event will also include the International Forum on the Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities. More information: http://www.pacrim.hawaii.edu/internationalforum/2012.

15 to 18 May: Interdependence 2012 Conference and Exposition

As part of the 25th Anniversary of Rick Hansenโ€™s legendary Man In Motion World Tour, the Rick Hansen Foundation (RHF) and the Rick Hansen Institute (RHI) are co-hosting a global conference and exposition to inspire collaboration in the pursuit of a more healthy and inclusive world. Through its unique design, Interdependence 2012 promises to engage leaders and influencers from around the world and provide an impetus to accelerate progress towards accessible communities for all and a cure for paralysis after spinal cord injury (SCI). More information: http://www.rickhansen.com/en-ca/home/interdependence2012.aspx.

4 to 6 June: Rio+20 Conference

Twenty years after the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development - people from all over the world will come together to discuss ways to best manage our common future in sustainable and lasting ways based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. More information: http://www.uncsd2012.org/rio20.

11 to 13 June: Universal Design Conference 2012

Universal design in public spaces is the main focus of the Conference to be held in Oslo, Norway. Topics to be addressed are issues related to universal design in planning, legislation, education, buildings, outdoor areas, information and communications technologies (ICT) and public transport. The Conference website will open for abstract submissions on 1 July 2011. More information: http://www.ud2012.no.

17 to 21 September: TRANSED 2012

The 13th International Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled Persons (TRANSED 2012) will be held in New Delhi, India. More information: http://www.transed2012.in.


(DISCLAIMER: The information below is provided by the NGO disability community and others for informational purposes only. This does not constitute endorsement of, or an approval by, the United Nations of any of the products, services, or opinions of the organization or individual. The United Nations bears no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of their statements and opinions.)

Pan African Network of People with Psychosocial Disabilities

An International Congress was held from 13 to 15 October in Cape Town, South Africa where the Pan African Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry deliberated the importance of the CRPD and mental health reform on the African continent. Delegates from 10 African Organizations representing persons with psychosocial disabilities gathered together to debate the challenges and issues facing their constituents in Africa. The Congress culminated in the Cape Town Declaration of October 2011, which was read at the Second Summit of the Movement for Global Mental Health (Cape Town, 17 October 2011), as well as the World Congress of the World Federation for Mental Health (Cape Town, 18 โ€“ 21 October 2011). More information: http://www.panusp.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/2_1_Announcement%20_October_2011.pdf.

Disability Networking Zone at ICASA 2011

A Disability Networking Zone will be organized by the International Disability and Development Consortium (IDCC) at the Community Village of the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA) to be held in Addis Ababa from 4 to 8 December 2011. Last year at ICASA Conference in Vienna, a similar initiative had been organized by IDDC members (HEARD, EU-Cord, VSO, WVI and others) to ensure a full week of programme focusing on the intersection between disability and HIV/AIDS. Participants from different backgrounds, fields and countries participated and contributed to create a vibrant Disability Networking Zone. More information: http://www.icasa2011addis.org.


Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Division for Social Policy and Development

United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA)

2 UN Plaza, DC2-1306, New York, NY 10017, USA.

Website: http://www.un.org/disabilities

Email: enable@un.org.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/United-Nations-Enable/196545623691523

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By: UN Enable
When: 7/2/2014

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