Welcome to the first Rant Wednesday of 2019.

The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was the first human rights treaty of the 21st century. Adopted in 2006, it came into force in 2008 and was ratified by the UK on 8th June 2009.

The Convention asserts that disabled people should be able to enjoy their human rights on an equal basis with non-disabled people.

It recognises that disabled people continue, in practice, to face a wide range of barriers, and sets out the measures governments are expected to take to remove them and to ensure that the rights of disabled people are respected. T

The Convention covers rights in areas such as: health, education, employment, access to justice, personal security, independent living and access to information.

The UK has ratified the Optional Protocol to CRPD, which allows people to bring a petition to the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities if they:

  • believe their Convention rights have been breached
  • have exhausted means of redress via the UK or European Courts

This step also gives the Committee authority to undertake enquiries, when reliable information is received, into allegations of grave or systematic violations of Convention rights.

Such an inquiry was conducted in response to a formal request from disabled people’s organisations concerning the cumulative impact of legislation, policies and measures adopted by the UK Government on social security schemes and on work and employment since 2010.

In a BBC article : Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said.

“What we are saying to Russia, what we are saying to President Putin –

they cannot continue to act with no regard or care for international laws or international norms,”

Yet the current and previous Governments have done exactly that.

We have a broken healthcare system that was poorly conceived in post war Britain, which never envisaged a population of 70 million, for which we all now pay the price.

We have a benefits system that penalises disabled persons for living within their diagnosis, where The United Nations Conventions that should have changed everything but around which not a lot has changed.

2019 could be a year of positive change, the big question is will it.