EOC welcomes ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by the National People’s Congress Standing Committee
The Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) welcomes ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) by the National People’s Congress Standing Committee on 26 June 2008, which was a major move of the Central Government to reaffirm its commitment to protect and promote the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities.
“The endorsement of this UN Convention is a commendable initiative on the part of China, which has won international appreciation for promoting disability rights. The move is also a noteworthy step with a firm intention to promote international co-operation to protect and promote the human rights of people with disabilities around the world,” said Mr. Raymond TANG, Chairperson of the EOC.
The Convention is a human rights instrument with an explicit social development dimension. It reaffirms that all persons with all types of disabilities must enjoy all human rights and fundamental freedoms on an equal basis with others.
In Hong Kong, the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO) was enacted in 1995 to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. The Ordinance renders it unlawful to discriminate or harass a person on the ground of disability in employment, education, provision of goods, services and facilities, etc.
Mr. TANG said, “It is hoped that the Convention will be extended to Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) in the near future. In this connection, the EOC urges the early commencement of negotiation between the Central Government and the SAR government regarding extension of the Convention to the SAR.”
“To implement the Convention, the government has to undertake all necessary measures to ensure equality of rights and access for persons with disabilities. An important strategy for achieving that goal is mainstreaming the needs of the disability community at policy level,” Mr. TANG emphasized.
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Equal Opportunities Commission
3 July 2008