Paul Gibson

Disability Rights Commissioner

Paul low res 200x300 Paul GibsonPaul Gibson took up his position as Commissioner with responsibilities for disability issues on 26 September 2011, the day New Zealand ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2008.

Mr Gibson has long been an advocate for the rights of disabled people. He became involved in student and disability politics as a young man. On the way to completing a masters in public policy, he was student association president and helped drive a disability ginger group on campus leading the university to examine ways to make its buildings and courses more accessible to all students. He is a former president of the Disabled People’s Assembly and was involved in the work of international NGOs advocating for the United Nations to adopt a Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. Mr Gibson is partially blind and uses Braille and assistive technology.

In his role, Mr Gibson is charged with advocating for the rights of disabled people. “If we are measuring change, then there have been significant steps. The work of the 90s has resulted in a national disability strategy. There’s new impetus, driven by the Disability Convention, to make sure New Zealanders with disabilities have equal opportunity to take part in all aspects of life and society.”

Thematic portfolio

  • Disability rights
  • Violence and abuse

Additional specific population groups

  • Disabled people
  • Older people


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