National Human Rights Institutions (NRHIs) play a critical role in promoting the enjoyment of human rights without discrimination, including by persons with disabilities. Some NHRIs have also assumed specific responsibilities to act as ‘independent mechanisms’ under Article 33.2 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, In this role NHRIs act as part of a framework tasked with promoting, protecting and monitoring implementation of the Convention.
This project, commissioned by the Asia Pacific Region of the ICC aims to produce a practical guide, capable of inspiring and supporting NHRIs across the globe to engage successfully in protecting and promoting the rights of persons with disabilities.
To do so effectively it must be challenging, pushing boundaries, while at the same time being grounded in the realities faced by NHRIs in different parts of the world. Achieving this requires the active involvement of NHRIs and other interested stakeholders, including disabled people’s organisations, in the identification and sharing of ‘promising practices.’
Such promising practices may concern (but are not limited to) how NHRIs have or are:
- Promoting ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)
- Advancing the rights of persons with disabilities via other international, regional or domestic human rights treaties and legislation, such as the Convention Against Torture, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the European Convention on Human Rights or the African Charter for Human and People’s Rights
- Developing their role as ‘independent mechanisms’ under Article 33.2 (UNCRPD) to promoting, protecting and monitoring implementation of the Convention
- Promoting awareness, understanding and respect for the human rights of persons with disabilities
- Monitoring the human rights of persons with disabilities, including those residing in or confined to institutions
- Measuring progress regarding implementation of the rights of persons with disabilities
- Advising government’s and parliaments and producing reports concerning the rights of persons with disabilities
- Hearing or considering complaints regarding the rights of persons with disabilities
- Intervening via the use of amicus curiae submissions to the Courts regarding the rights of persons with disabilities
- Involving persons with disabilities in their work, either in organisational governance, as staff, consultees or partners
- Ensuring that they are accessible to persons with disabilities
- Working with partner organisations to promote and protect the rights of persons with disabilities
- The interactions of NHRIs with the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, whether via State examinations, the complaints procedure, thematic days of discussion, the evolution of general comments or other vehicles
- Acting together at the ICC regional level or via other forums to improve their capacity or to collaborate in the protection and promotion of the rights of persons with disabilities
If you believe that your organisation has promising practice to share or would like to recommend that the practices of a national human rights institution are included as an example in the manual, please get in touch using the contact form below.
As the project develops it is hoped that NHRIs will contribute blogposts sharing their practices to promote the human rights of persons with disabilities. Please get in touch if you are interested in contributing a post.