- July 18, 2013

Member Organizations:
Arab Organization of Disabled People, Disabled People’s International,
Down Syndrome International, European Disability Forum,
Inclusion International, International Federation of Hard of Hearing People,
Latin American Network of Non-Governmental Organizations of Persons with Disabilities and their Families,
Pacific Disability Forum, World Blind Union, World Federation of the Deaf,
World Federation of the DeafBlind,
World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry

Press Release

6th Conference of the States Parties to the CRPD

New York, 18 July 2013 – The 6th Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) began on July 17, 2013. A full room and a good number of side events confirm the relevance of what has become the most relevant annual gathering at international level on disability rights.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Ensuring adequate standard of living: empowerment and participation of persons with disabilities within the framework of the CRPD.” Taking place between 17 – 19 July—and in advance of the September Special Event on Millennium Development Goals and High-Level Meeting on Disability and Development—panels, consultations and discussions are focused on the mainstreaming of disability in the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

The Conference confirmed the composition of the Bureau, which includes Kenya as Chair and El Salvador, Israel, Bulgaria and Bangladesh as Vice-chairs.

At the opening of the conference, IDA Chair Mr. Yannis Vardakastanis, speaking on behalf of civil society and DPOs in particular, highlighted the importance of mainstreaming disability in future global development goals, noting that this issue currently represents the most important advocacy activity for the disability community worldwide.

“The implementation of the CRPD and inclusion of disability rights in the Post-2015 Development Agenda should create the necessary preconditions for States Parties to the Convention, the UN system, disabled people’s organizations, the wider civil society and all actors of society to join forces to make rights enshrined in the CRPD accessible and enforceable for all persons with disabilities worldwide,” he said. His speech was very much welcome by the Chair of the Conference and by the audience.

The conference programme includes thematic roundtables and an informal panel on economic empowerment through inclusive social protection; poverty reduction strategies; disability-inclusive development in national, regional and international processes; community-based rehabilitation and habilitation for an inclusive society; and an interactive dialogue on the implementation of the Convention.

Many Government delegates stated their support to the full involvement of representative DPOs and referred to the important role of the International Disability Alliance, also highlighting their concerns about the lack of adequate involvement in the preparatory phase of the Conference.

The International Disability Alliance is an alliance of eight global and four regional organisations of persons with disabilities. It is a membership-based organisation of persons with disabilities representing a unique and authoritative voice of the world’s largest and mostly overlooked minority group.

Geneva Office: 150 route de Ferney, PO Box 2100, CH 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland
New York Office: 245 Park Avenue, 39th Floor, New York, NY 10167, United States
Contact email: info [at]
IDA Website:

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Category: Archive, CRPD, Press Release