Text Size

Current Size: 100%

GOP Thwarts US Senate CRPD Ratification AGAIN

US ratification of the UN Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities--a human rights treaty that is revolutionizing 150 governments' national disability policy and program development for children and adults with disabilities throughout the globe since voted in force in 2007 by more countries signing on than for any other UN human rights treaty. The leadership from the disability activist sector along with diplomats at the UN have been at the forefront of CRPD authorship, advocacy and promulgation. The UN General Assembly in a Special Session in Fall 2013 passed a unanimous resoultion supporting clear integration of CRPD tenets with the post-2015 Sustainable Developments Goals (SDGs) agenda goals, the new priorities when the Millennium developments Goals targets are completed and evaluated in 2015.

In the USA, members of the Republican party have historically opposed US signing and ratifying human rights treaties, stating a threat of our legislative and oversight authority across these domains. In the case of the CRPD treaty, bipartisan support has emanated from strong present and past Executive and legislative leaders who have been instrumental in advocacy and the passage of the laws that protect and provide justice and programs 'of, by and for' the community of persons with disabilites: President George H.W. Bush, President William Clinton, President George W. bush, Sen. robert Dole (a veteran with disability), Sen. Thomas Harkin, and many more.

This latest setback reflectts the gridlock extant in the US Congress and the influence of Tea Party representatives who oppose based on a perspective of limited governance from Washington DC and from external agencies.