UN’s ‘human catastrophe’ rights expert to deliver high-profile UK lecture | DisabledGo News and Blog


The UN expert who told the government that its cuts to disabled people’s support had caused a “human catastrophe” is to visit the UK this autumn to deliver a high-profile lecture on disability rights.

Theresia Degener, the professor of law and disability studies who chairs the UN committee on the rights of persons with disabilities, will deliver the first Caroline Gooding Memorial Lecture at the University of Leeds in October.

Last August, Degener told the UK government’s delegation – during a public examination of its progress on implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) – that its cuts to social security and other support for disabled people had caused “a human catastrophe” which was “totally neglecting the vulnerable situation people with disabilities find themselves in”.

She later gave an interview with the BBC – which was not broadcast – in which she warned that the portrayal of disabled people by the UK government and media as “parasites” who live on benefits could put them at risk of violence, and even “killings and euthanasia”.

The annual lecture was set up as a memorial to the equality consultant and author Caroline Gooding, who played a leading role in securing improvements to disability rights legislation as a member of the Disability Rights Taskforce.

Gooding was later director of legislative change at the Disability Rights Commission throughout its eight years. She died in July 2014.

 

Source: UN’s ‘human catastrophe’ rights expert to deliver high-profile UK lecture | DisabledGo News and Blog

Watchdog’s barrister calls for legal right to independent living | DisabledGo News and Blog


Legal advice commissioned by the equality and human rights watchdog has called for disabled people to have a legal right to independent living.

The barrister was asked by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) last year to examine if there needed to be a right to independent living in law for disabled people, because of concerns that their right to choice and control over their lives was being “eroded”.

The lawyer has now concluded that there does need to be a legal right to independent living, although there are several options for how that could be achieved.

Now EHRC is consulting on which of those options it should recommend, and it is likely to publish its conclusions by the end of the year.

An EHRC spokesman told Disability News Service that the barrister’s advice contains “quite a few options” on “how such a right could work in practice”.

He said: “We are going to speak to a range of people involved and see if we can narrow down those options and will then come forward with a set of proposals.”

Although he said EHRC could not yet say that it agreed that there needed to be a legal right to independent living, he said its proposals would “take into account” the barrister’s advice.

Last autumn, the UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) called on the UK government to recognise disabled people’s legal right to independent living, one of the key demands disabled people and their organisations in the UK had made in their submissions to the committee .

has called for disabled people to have a legal right to independent living.

The barrister was asked by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) last year to examine if there needed to be a right to independent living in law for disabled people, because of concerns that their right to choice and control over their lives was being “eroded”.

The lawyer has now concluded that there does need to be a legal right to independent living, although there are several options for how that could be achieved.

Now EHRC is consulting on which of those options it should recommend, and it is likely to publish its conclusions by the end of the year.

An EHRC spokesman told Disability News Service that the barrister’s advice contains “quite a few options” on “how such a right could work in practice”.

He said: “We are going to speak to a range of people involved and see if we can narrow down those options and will then come forward with a set of proposals.”

Although he said EHRC could not yet say that it agreed that there needed to be a legal right to independent living, he said its proposals would “take into account” the barrister’s advice.

Last autumn, the UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) called on the UK government to recognise disabled people’s legal right to independent living, one of the key demands disabled people and their organisations in the UK had made in their submissions to the committee .

 

Source: Watchdog’s barrister calls for legal right to independent living | DisabledGo News and Blog

TUC Disabled Workers’ Conference: UN convention ‘must become part of UK law’ | DisabledGo News and Blog


Disabled trade unionists have called UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPDthe TUC and unions across the country to campaign for the UN disability convention to be incorporated into UK law.

Disabled members of 22 unions, who were at the annual TUC Disabled Workers’ Conference in Bournemouth, voted unanimously for a motion calling for a national campaign on the issue.

The conference was held just a few months after the UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) told a UK government delegation that its cuts to social security and other support for disabled people had caused “a human catastrophe”.

The UN committee called on the UK last autumn to make more than 80 improvements to the ways its laws and policies affect disabled people’s human rights.

But delegates in Bournemouth heard that the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) was not legally binding in the UK, and so the government was free to continue breaching any of its articles.

David Chrimes, of the FDA union, which represents senior public servants and professionals, who proposed the motion, told the conference about his brother, Richard, whose case was featured by the BBC earlier this year.

Richard Chrimes has to crawl up and down his stairs several times a day – and crawl from his front door to his car – because there is not enough space to adapt his two-storey house to make it accessible for him or even to fit his wheelchair through the front door.

 

Source: TUC Disabled Workers’ Conference: UN convention ‘must become part of UK law’ | DisabledGo News and Blog

‘Deep concern’ as launch of MPs’ inquiry into SEN support ignores inclusive education | DisabledGo News and Blog


The inquiry by the Commons education select committee will investigate the impact of major reforms to the special educational needs and disability (SEND) system that were introduced four years ago through the Children and Families Act.

But The Alliance for Inclusive Education (ALLFIE) says the announcement of the committee’s inquiry – headed by disabled Tory MP and former education minister Robert Halfon – made no mention of inclusive education.

ALLFIE linked this with the Conservative party’s long-standing commitment to “end the bias towards the inclusion of children with special needs in mainstream schools”.

In 2015, a year after the act was passed, the party boasted in its 2015 general election manifesto of how it had “created 2,200 more special schools places through our free schools programme”.

Tara Flood, ALLFIE’s director, said she was “deeply concerned, frustrated and angry” at the failure to mention inclusive education in the inquiry launch, which she said was not an accident or “ignorance” but a deliberate attempt to “avoid the issue”.

She said: “It is disingenuous of Halfon to have side-stepped the issue.”

 

Source: ‘Deep concern’ as launch of MPs’ inquiry into SEN support ignores inclusive education | DisabledGo News and Blog

Disability rights coalition calls for talks with Theresa May over ‘human catastrophe’ : Welfare Weekly


A coalition of Disabled people’s organisations has written to the Prime Minister, urging her to meet with them to discuss the deteriorating quality of life experienced by millions of disabled people in the UK.

The call comes exactly six months since the United Nations’ damning report on the UK Government’s implementation of the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD), which accused the UK Government of “grave” and “systematic” violations of disabled people’s human rights.

 The report, published last August, made a number of recommendations but disabled people’ organisations which gave evidence to the UN say that the Government is not taking the urgent action required

The coalition has highlighted five areas of particular concern:

  1. The failure to fully implement the 2010 Equality Act.
  2. The lack of joined up working across the 4 nations of the UK.
  3. The lack of resources to ensure disabled people’s right to independent living and inclusion in their communities.
  4. The continuing gap in employment opportunities for disabled people.
  5. The right of disabled people to an adequate standard of living and social protection.

Tracey Lazard, CEO of Inclusion London and Reclaiming Our Futures Alliance member, said:

 

Source: Disability rights coalition calls for talks with Theresa May over ‘human catastrophe’ : Welfare Weekly

What happens to support for disabled people after Brexit?


A good question for in the Tories austerity campaign there appears to be no room for manoeuvre to allow any reasonable adjustments for disabled people.

Will any existing European Union legislation be maintained into UK law and furthermore will EU legislation coming through be also included. Without these current and forthcoming EU legislations the outlook for disabled people will be even more depressing and unequal as it is already.

All of the UK needs to unify behind ensuring that disabled people now and after Brexit are not abandoned by this Tory Government, as you may also become disabled within your lifetime. Think of others like you would for yourself and your own family, otherwise the life for disabled will be far worse than it is now and now is not as good as it should be.

Tory Britain!

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UK faces UN examination: Government cuts caused ‘human catastrophe’ | DisabledGo News and Blog


An international committee of disabled human rights experts have delivered a series of withering attacks on the UK government over its failure to implement the UN disability convention. Following a two-day public examination of the UK’s progress in implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the committee said it was “deeply concerned” that the UK government still believed it was a “champion of human rights”. The committee’s chair, Theresia Degener, from Germany, told the UK government’s delegation that its cuts to social security and other support for disabled people had caused “a human catastrophe”, which was “totally neglecting the vulnerable situation people with disabilities find themselves in”. Stig Langvad, the committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) member who is leading the UK examination, said the government had failed to demonstrate its commitment to the convention. He said the government had failed to answer many questions

Source: UK faces UN examination: Government cuts caused ‘human catastrophe’ | DisabledGo News and Blog

UK faces UN examination: Call for action over mental health detentions | DisabledGo News and Blog


The UK government has faced repeated, damning criticism from a UN committee of disabled human rights experts over its treatment of people in secure mental health settings. The criticism came during a two-day public examination in Geneva of the UK’s record in implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD). Members of the committee raised concerns about the increase in the use of compulsory detention, the use of Tasers, and the “discriminatory and disproportionate” use of detention on people from Britain’s African Caribbean communities. Martin Babu Mwesigwa, a member of the committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD), said he had been told that members of the UK’s African Caribbean community were subject to “highly cohesive and illicit violence” when detained in mental health and other “custodial” institutions. Mwesigwa, himself from Uganda, pointed to a report by the UN’s committee on the elimination of racial discrimination, which

Source: UK faces UN examination: Call for action over mental health detentions | DisabledGo News and Blog

UK faces UN examination: Government agrees to think again on engagement | DisabledGo News and Blog


The government has agreed to “reflect” on its failure to engage with disabled people and their organisations, after facing public criticism from a UN committee of disabled human rights experts. A delegation of civil servants from across the UK government listened as members of the UN committee on the rights of person with disabilities (CRPD) repeatedly criticised its failure to engage with disabled people’s organisations (DPOs). They were taking part in a two-day public examination of the UK’s progress in implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, in Geneva. CRPD member Samuel Njuguna Kabue said the evidence he had received from DPOs disputed the UK government’s claim that it consulted with disabled people and their organisations when drawing up policies and making decisions. He said disabled people and their organisations said they had not been “adequately involved” in monitoring the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with

Source: UK faces UN examination: Government agrees to think again on engagement | DisabledGo News and Blog