The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD) promotes, protects and ensures “the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities, and to promote respect for their inherent dignity”. As of November 2016, 47 Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) partners have ratified the UN CRPD. It therefore sits at the heart of common efforts across ASEM countries to advance justice for persons with disabilities. One of the main messages of the UN CRPD – which was confirmed unanimously during the ASEM Seminar – is to treat persons with disabilities as ‘subjects’ and not as ‘objects’ to be managed by others.
At the 16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights (8-10 November 2016, Beijing, China) which took place on the topic of “Persons with Disabilities and Human Rights”, there was overall consensus that States Parties to the CRPD need to undertake more efforts to incorporate the CRPD into country-specific arrangements as domestic legislation is vitally necessary in realising the rights of persons with disabilities. Regional action is also needed to help guide and sustain action at the national level. Full inclusion and participation in society is an important element of protecting and promoting the rights of persons with disabilities.
This Policy Briefing consisted of:
- Sharing the outcomes and recommendations from the 16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights
- Exchanging best practices and lessons learnt from across Asia and Europe for taking a rights-based approach to providing social services to persons with disabilities
- Providing the current state-of-play on the advances made across both regions, and to identify emerging issues for social inclusion
- Identifying opportunities for multi-stakeholder cooperation to improve social inclusion measures in both regions
The welcome remarks were given by:
- Ambassador Jean-Charles BERTHONNET, Ambassador of the Republic of France to Indonesia and Timor-Leste
- Mr. Charles-Michel GEURTS, Chargé d’Affaires, European Union Delegation to Indonesia
- Mr. Rolf RING, Deputy Director, Raoul Wallenberg Institute (Sweden)
- Dr. Gerard QUINN, Director of the Centre for Disability and Policy, NUI Galway, Scientific Committee member of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Right
- Sri Kusumastuti RAHAYU, Head of Social Assistance WG – TNP2K
- Ms. Kapka PANAYOTOVA, President, European Network on Independent Living
Presentations were followed by a Q&A session