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ACTION ALERT: Contact your Senator on US ratification of CRPD

The time is NOW to contact your Senator to vote to support CRPD ratification and join the 138 countries who have ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

GlobalPartnersUnited/ Global teleRehabilitation Institute CRPD Sample letter: I write in support of the United States’ ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), the first human rights treaty of the 21st century and currently signed by 158 countries and ratified by 138. In 2009, President Obama authorized the US to become a signatory to this important human rights treaty (Susan Rice signed for the US at the UN).  In the fall of 2012, the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee held hearings that demonstrated strong bipartisan support expressed for CRPD ratification. Unfortunately, misinterpretations of the potential results of CRPD ratification and continued resistance to US participation in UN human rights treaties in general, led to defeat of this proposed ratification action by a very small number of votes--5!

The US has a critical role to play in ensuring appropriate societal inclusion for persons with disabilities and needed exchange of best human/gender rights, public health, health care, education, rehabilitation, and employment practices. With ratification of the CRPD, the US has an opportunity and a moral imperative to engage optimally in formal and informal collaboration and resource exchange for program and policy development that occurs among States Parties who have chosen to ratify the CRPD; i.e.; 133 nations of the 154 signatories currently. 

We now request the U.S. Senate to support expeditiously the ratification of the treaty upon voting on November 5, 2013.

As we in the USA celebrated the 23rd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, we strongly urge the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings to result in a vote for ratification. US CRPD ratification would not be a symbolic gesture. This strategic policy action would benefit the one billion persons worldwide with disabilities, their families and caregivers by contributing to equitable societal inclusion, human rights and economic growth practices with poverty reduction results. All persons benefit from ensuring human rights for children and adults with disabilities and the related global economic growth that results from CRPD compliance and persons with disabilities' societal inclusion participation in healthcare, education and employment.

The  UN High Level Meeting of the General Assembly (September 23, 2013) had disability and development as its sole focus to emphasize the need for integration of CRPD tenets and the voice of persons with disabilities in planning the post-2015 (Millennium Development Goals) development agenda’s action targets (http://www.un.org/disabilities/default.asp?id=1590). The US’s lack of CRPD ratification leadership— well-known among states parties’ signatories and ratifying nations— is a point of global concern and deep disappointment. Now is the time for the US to join the ranks of those nations who recognize that global human rights progress, societal inclusion for all, health and education access, and poverty reduction depend on implementing the CRPD tenets collectively and collaboratively.

Evelyn Cherow, CEO/Founder, GPU/GtRI