What is the issue?

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is an international treaty put forth by the United Nations that sets baseline international standards for the treatment of persons with disabilities in various contexts. The United States signed the convention in 2009, but has failed to ratified it.

Why is it important?

Although the CRPD is almost fully in line with existing U.S. law, the Senate, divided largely along party lines, has refused to recommend ratification. U.S. ratification of the CRPD would not only be a symbolic victory, but it would also permit international oversight and accountability over the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities. Nearly 60 million Americans experience some form of disability; ratification would show a U.S. commitment to protect their rights on par with all Americans. The United States is a leader in disability rights and ratification of the CRPD would encourage others to follow this lead and remove the stigma from disability.

How does iustitia advocate and educate on this issue?

iustitia advocates for the Senate to recommend ratification of the CRPD by demonstrating the importance of ratification and standing in solidarity with disability rights organizations in their longstanding fight for ratification.

Recent Developments:

  • December 4, 2012: The CRPD was up for ratification by the U.S. Senate. A ⅔ supermajority was required to ratify the convention. It received 61 of the 67 required votes for ratification. Despite bipartisan support and the understanding that it would require no changes to current U.S. law, the Senate rejected the treaty.

Read more about the CRPD on our blog.