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The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Islamic Tradition: The question of legal capacity in focus

GHALY, Mohammed
2019

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Legal capacity of persons with mental disabilities was a con- tentious issue during the process of drafting the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The Arab Group, consisting of Muslim-majority countries, in the United Nations expressed reservations about the formulation of the Article related to this issue. However, their reservations were dis- missed because they arguably had to do with language-specificity. The author revisits these deliberations and argues that the reservations of the Arab countries have to do with reli- gious aspects rooted in the Islamic tradition. By ignoring these religious aspects, the Disability Convention missed a rich source of wisdom provided by a world religion like Islam. On the other hand, the innovative insights provided by the Disability Convention can be of value to improve contemporary discussions on legal capacity within the Islamic tradition. Unlike the previous studies, which either focused on the approach of the Disability Convention or that of the Islamic tradition, this study examines both approaches and highlights the points of agree- ment and disagreement and finally proposes suggestions for narrowing the existing gap between these two approaches.

Invisible victims of sexual violence. Access to justice for women and girls with disabilities in India

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH
April 2018

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This report is based on 17 cases of sexual violence against women and girls with disabilities in eight Indian states. It comes five years after The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 (the 2013 amendments) were adopted in India. It follows Human Rights Watch’s November 2017 report “Everyone Blames Me”: Barriers to Justice and Support Services for Sexual Assault Survivors in India, which found that rape survivors still face significant barriers obtaining justice and critical support services because legal and other reforms have not been fully realised.

This report finds that while the 2013 amendments have made significant progress in responding to the widespread challenges that victims of sexual violence endure, they have yet to properly develop and implement support for survivors with disabilities in the form of trainings and reforms throughout the criminal justice system. It highlights gaps in enforcement and calls for concrete measures to address the needs of women and girls with disabilities seeking justice for abuse. 

Disability inclusive elections in Africa: a systematic review of published and unpublished literature

VIRENDRAKUMAR, Bhavisha
JOLLEY, Emma
BADU, Eric
SCHMIDT, Elena
2018

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The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities underscores the equal right of persons with disabilities to participate in political life. However, in Africa they are often unable to exercise their right to vote. This study sought to systematically review available evidence on inclusive elections in Africa. Findings showed that although most African countries ratified disability-focused legislation and proclaimed equal opportunities, the implementation of the legislation varies across the continent. Barriers to political participation can occur at any electoral stage and can be broadly categorised into three groups: lack of education and financial resources; stigma and negative social attitudes; and inaccessible physical infrastructure.

A world without Down’s syndrome? Online resistance on Twitter: #worldwithoutdowns and #justaboutcoping

BURCH, Leah
2017

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Presented by actress and comedian Sally Phillips, A World Without Down’s Syndrome has brought important ethical debates regarding prenatal screening into the public domain. By talking to people with Down’s syndrome, family members, and professionals, Sally has presented a nuanced and thorough examination of the type of world we are living in. Following the documentary, Twitter users have continued to engage with debates and have created a resilient platform for challenging public attitudes. This paper explores the ways in which Twitter hashtags have provided a space for such important and long overdue conversations. While it would not be possible to provide a full overview of the topical conversations that the two hashtags have provoked, I aim to focus on some of the most prominent topics. The following, then, will explore the potential of alternative narratives that resist, and disrupt, normative notions of the human using the hashtags #worldwithoutdowns and #justaboutcoping.

Factors influencing employment and employability for persons with disability: Insights from a city in South India

RAMACHANDRA, Srikrishna
et al
April 2017

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Employee and employer perceptions on barriers existing among Information Technology (IT) and IT-enabled sectors to employ persons with disabilities (PWD) were investigated. Two hundred participants (147 PWD and 53 employers) from six organizations were included in the study, which was conducted in Hyderabad, India. A semi-structured questionnaire was administered to the participants. The study also documented enabling factors that have facilitated employment of PWD. An assessment of awareness levels among employers and employees with disabilities on the provisions of the Indian PWD Act (1995) was also undertaken.

 

Indian J Occup Environ Med. 2017 Jan-Apr; 21(1): 36–41

doi:  10.4103/ijoem.IJOEM_44_16

Mental health and human rights : Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

OFFICE OF THE HIGH COMMISIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS
January 2017

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"The present report, mandated by the Human Rights Council in resolution 32/18, identifies some of the major challenges faced by users of mental health services, persons with mental health conditions and persons with psychosocial disabilities. These include stigma and discrimination, violations of economic, social and other rights and the denial of autonomy and legal capacity.

In the report, the High Commissioner recommends a number of policy shifts, which would support the full realisation of the human rights of those populations, such as the systematic inclusion of human rights in policy and the recognition of the individual’s autonomy, agency and dignity. Such changes cover measures to improve the quality of mental health service delivery, to put an end to involuntary treatment and institutionalisation and to create a legal and policy environment that is conducive to the realisation of the human rights of persons with mental health conditions and psychosocial disabilities"

A/HRC/34/32

Human Rights Council, Thirty-fourth session, 27 February-24 March 2017

Disability at a glance 2015: Strengthening employment prospects for persons with disabilities in Asia and the Pacific

UN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMISSION FOR ASIA AND THE PACIFIC (ESCAP), Social Development Division
2015

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This report, the fifth edition in the Disability at a Glance series, focuses on barriers to the employment of persons with disabilities in the Asia-Pacific region, and offers solutions to strengthen their employment prospects. It offers a regional overview of disability legislation, policies and practices, as well as relevant country-specific information with a particular emphasis on the employment of persons with disabilities. The information is drawn from a targeted disability survey carried out in 2015 by the ESCAP secretariat, and research undertaken by other organizations and scholars.

The publication consists mainly of two parts. In Part 1, Chapter 1 discusses key employment trends shaping the experiences of persons with disabilities in Asia and the Pacific. Chapter 2 considers the major barriers that persons with disabilities face as they seek to find decent work in the open labour market. Chapter 3 explores a number of strategies used by governments and in the private sector to promote greater access to employment for persons with disabilities. Finally, Chapter 4 lays out a series of action points governments should consider in their efforts to remove the numerous employment barriers faced by many millions of disabled people. In Part 2, country snapshots provide the latest demographic, socioeconomic and employment-specific data from 58 countries in 5 ESCAP subregions .

Getting away with murder

QUARMBY, Katharine
August 2008

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This report examines the prevalence of hate crimes committed against disabled people in the UK. It defines the behaviour, outlines the legislation designed to alleviate occurrences and describes methods for reporting. This resource would be useful for anyone with an interest in disability, hate crimes and human rights

Torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL
July 2008

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This report recategorises violence and abuse perpetrated against persons with disabilities as torture or a form of ill-treatment. It is intended that victims and advocates will thereby pursue stronger legal protection and redress for violations of human rights. This resource would be useful for anyone wiht an interest in disability, development and human rights

From the front line : the impact of social, legal and judicial impediments to sexual health promotion, and HIV and AIDS related care and support for males who have sex with males in Bangladesh and India

MULJI, Kim
Ed
2006

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This is the report of a study to explore social justice issues concerning men who have sex with men, in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Lucknow, Pune and Dhaka, and the human rights violations faced by them, and analyse how this impacts upon their vulnerability to sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. It is part of a larger project to develop strategies to reduce the impact of stigma, discrimination and harassment men who have sex with men face on HIV risk reduction programmes directed at them

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