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UN: Australia is not meeting human rights obligations to First People with disability

Date posted: 14 October 2013

Australia has been reviewed for the first time under the United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, to which Australia is a signatory. The disability rights record was scrutinised and has come up wanting.

Last month, a non-Government delegation representing a number of disabled people's organisations and advocacy groups presented to the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities at the United Nations in Geneva. The Committee identified significant shortcomings relating to all Australians with disability. Many are outlined in the fact sheets prepared by the non-Government delegation that presented to the UN Committee.

In its concluding observations released last week, the Committee outlined its recommendations for progressing Australia's compliance with the Convention. The Committee is 'concerned that not all the organisations of persons with disabilities, including those of people with psychosocial disabilities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, are provided with adequate resources for their operations.'

Damian Griffis, Executive Officer of the First Peoples Disability Network (FPDN) said, 'The recommendations provided to the Australian Government are critical reflections of the way Australia is viewed on its human rights record by the rest of the world. When it comes to Aboriginal Australians with disability, there are some steps that must be taken immediately.'

The Committee's report recommends that the government as a matter of urgency, ends the unwarranted use of prisons for the management of un-convicted persons with disabilities, with a focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons with disabilities, by establishing legislative, administrative and support frameworks that comply with the Convention.

Source: ABC Ramp Up


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Last updated: 14 October 2013
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