Optional Protocol to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities welcomed

Optional Protocol to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities welcomed

July 1, 2016

The Optional Protocol to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was tabled in the New Zealand Parliament today.

“We commend the New Zealand Government for their commitment to signing the Optional Protocol and look forward to it coming into force,’ said Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford.

“Enabling the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to consider complaints or breaches under the Convention is an important way to strengthen and protect the human rights of New Zealanders with disabilities.”

The Optional Protocol to the Convention enables the Committee to examine individual complaints against member states. As of May 2016 the protocol has 92 signatories and 89 state parties. It was adopted by the United Nations ten years ago.

“We pay tribute to many New Zealanders who have helped with the creation of the Convention and the Protocol,” said Mr Rutherford.

“In particular we acknowledge our own Robert Martin who was elected to the UN CRPD only last month.”

Human Rights Commission

The Commission works for a free, fair, safe and just New Zealand, where diversity is valued and human dignity and rights are respected.