Priority issues for disabled New Zealanders welcomed by Disability Rights Commissioner

Priority issues for disabled New Zealanders welcomed by Disability Rights Commissioner

March 15, 2018

The List of Issues about New Zealand’s compliance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has been welcomed by the Human Rights Commission.

The List of Issues, released by the United Nations yesterday, contains a series of questions for the Government to answer on a number of priority areas for disabled New Zealanders. This is the second review of New Zealand’s compliance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities since New Zealand ratified it in 2008.

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that addressing the issues raised is vital to ensuring better outcomes for disabled New Zealanders.

“The list released today covers a wide range of issues, including education, employment, health, housing, justice and access. It is essential these are addressed and that we are constructively working towards ensuring better outcomes for disabled New Zealanders,” Ms Tesoriero says.

The Commission, the Office of the Ombudsman and the Disabled People’s Organisations Coalition form an Independent Monitoring Mechanism (IMM) under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero is currently chair of the IMM.

“The IMM submitted to the Committee and discussed its concerns with the Committee as it shaped its list of issues. I’m pleased to see that the priority concerns of the IMM have all been included.”

The Government is now required to provide concrete information on how they have improved outcomes for disabled people in these key areas.

“We’ve had positive engagement with Ministers and we look forward to continuing to work with Ministers and officials to achieve better outcomes for the disabled community,” Ms Tesoriero says.

“The IMM will be advocating that the Government use the List of Issues and questions from the Committee to form a roadmap for work prioritisation for agencies over the next year.”

The DPO Coalition and public will also have the opportunity to make their own submissions (or shadow reports) about the issues raised by the Committee. For more information on upcoming UN reviews and how you can get involved, visit: https://consultation.hrc.co.nz.