Executive Summary

This is a report on national consultations focused on people with disability in relation to the proposed Comprehensive and Integral International Convention on the Rights and Dignity of Persons with Disabilities.

The consultations were held during July and early August 2004. People with Disability Australia, in partnership with the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations and the National Association of Community Legal Centres, conducted the consultations.

Section one of this report provides an overview and discussion of the methodology used in the national consultations. Acknowledgements of the contributions made by individuals and organisations in this process are provided.

Section two considers overarching issues related to the process of development of the convention, and the current draft text proposal. People with disability and their organisations expressed strong support for the development of a United Nations convention on the human rights of people with disability and called for the Australian Government to actively support the development of the convention. This section also discusses and recommends a suggested structure for the convention, the level and type of proscription of the articles in the convention, and the style of language to be used in the convention. The section also discusses important human rights issues that are not included in the current draft text. Recommendations concerning the relationship of the convention to other human rights instruments, and to existing national laws, are also made.

Section three makes recommendations on an approach to the inclusion and recognition of specific population groups in the preamble of the convention.

Section four provides a detailed analysis and proposed text amendments and revisions of the draft articles of the convention, based on feedback received in the course of these consultations.

Section five highlights other issues related to the development of the convention that have been raised or reinforced in the course of this project. It recommends ongoing human rights education for people with disability in Australia. It recommends an ongoing process of engagement between the Australian government and people with disability and their representative organisations as the convention develops.