From Transition Letter Attachment Sent by AAPD and a Coalition of Consumer Controlled Organizations (12/22/08):
Promote Human Rights
· The United Nations adopted The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Peoples with Disabilities (CRPD) on December 13, 2006. Forty-two nations ratified the CRPD and a total of 136 nations have signed it, indicating their intent to ratify.
· During the campaign, President-elect Obama indicated that the administration would support US ratification.
· The CRPD will promote, protect, and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights by persons with disabilities.
· It addresses the rights of people with disabilities to self-determination, physical and programmatic access, personal mobility, health, education, employment, habilitation and rehabilitation, participation in political life, and equality and non-discrimination.
· When the US ratifies the CRPD, it will underline its recognition of and commitment to enforce human rights and equality for people with disabilities.
· Americans with disabilities still face barriers to these rights, including the right to community living outside of institutions, guaranteed by the United States Supreme Court in Olmstead.
· Enabling people with disabilities to live independently in their homes and communities, rather than in costly Medicaid-funded nursing homes and mental institutions will not only save millions of dollars, but also will enhance the quality of life for millions of Americans.
· Young people need more supports to promote the transition from school to independent living and work to enhance quality of life and decrease the alarming number of unemployed individuals with disabilities.
· Individuals with disabilities are subjected to hate crimes, but specific data is limited.
Long Term Goals:
· Promote and protect human rights of individuals with disabilities at home and abroad.
· Promote policies that emphasize the transition from school to independent living and work.
Short Term Goals:
· Sign the UN Convention on the Rights of Peoples with Disabilities and work with Congress to ratify it.
· Work with the States to make sure they enforce the right to community living outside of institutions, as mandated by the United States Supreme Court in Olmstead, and with Congress to provide the States with the tools they need to enforce it.
· Require law enforcement agencies currently required to keep surveillance data on hate crimes to collect specific data on the disabilities of hate crime victims and provide technical assistance to the public and law enforcement agencies to encourage reporting.