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Canadians celebrate the ratification of the UN convention on the rights of persons with disabilities

Canadians celebrate the ratification of the UN convention on the rights of persons with disabilities

2010. 04. 06.

The dream of a more inclusive and accessible Canada motivated Canadians with disabilities and the Government of Canada to engage in a five year process to create the CRPD.

The CRPD is a product of a historic partnership between the global movement of people with disabilities and their governments.  Many in the government of Canada championed the cause of the CRPD.  One of our first standard bearers was the Hon. Peter MacKay, then Minister of Foreign Affairs.  Even when he accepted new responsibilities, Minister MacKay continued to demonstrate leadership on this file and to a large extent it is his good work that led the way forward to Canada’s ratification.
Steve Estey, Chair of the Council of Canadians with Disabilities’ (CCD’s) International Committee attended all of the Ad Hoc Committee meetings in New York and was a member of the Canadian delegation at the UN that worked on the development of the CRPD.

“Today’s ratification by the Government of Canada signals the end of an era where people with disabilities were seen as objects of charity and passive recipients of rehabilitation and state-supported largesse.  Today ushers in a new era where people with disabilities are viewed as full citizens with exactly the same rights and responsibilities as other citizens of Canada,” stated Estey on the 11th of March.

“The CRPD is not simply another well-intentioned declaration without any teeth.  It requires the Government of Canada to act and monitor progress in achieving the commitments of the treaty.  Canada’s actions to create a more accessible and inclusive society will be the subject of both domestic and international scrutiny,” said Marie White, National Chairperson of CCD.

“Today we celebrate at the international level Canadian leadership on disability issues but tomorrow we get down to work on the domestic agenda of removing barriers that prohibit the full and equal participation of Canadians with disabilities,” stated White.

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