- June 16, 2018


  1. Highlight from the COSP week
  2. Lead-up to the Conference: the Civil Society Coordination Mechanism
  3. Civil Society CRPD Forum, 11 June 2017
  4. Conference of States Parties to the CRPD, 12-14 June 2017
  5. CRPD Committee Elections

1. Highlights from the CoSP Week

For the second time since the entry into force of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), persons with disabilities and their representative organizations were meaningfully consulted and actively engaged in the preparation and formal proceedings of the Conference of States Parties (COSP) to the CRPD. The International Disability Alliance played a key role during the first six months of 2018 to ensure the participation of civil society, and congratulates the COSP Bureau on a successful Conference! Read below to learn more about the International Disability Alliance and our members’ participation in the the 11th Conference of States Parties to the CRPD! 
  • Meaningful engagement of civil society as round table co-chairs in all thematic sessions, and as speakers in the opening and closing sessions of the Conference
  • A dynamic Civil Society CRPD Forum transformed into a Day of General Discussion on Articles 4(3) and 33(3)
  • Participation of IDA and its members in 24 side events throughout the week
  • Successful engagement of the Civil Society Coordination Mechanism in advance of the Conference

2. Lead-up to the Conference: the Civil Society Coordination Mechanism

In 2016, an open, self-organizing civil society coordination mechanism (CSCM) was established as a way for organizations of persons with disabilities (DPOs) and other civil society stakeholders to advocate with a unified voice for the full inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities and their representative organizations in all elements of the Conference. IDA provides the technical support for this mechanism and liaises with the Bureau throughout the year.

From January – June 2018, the CSCM worked with the COSP Bureau and the UN system to ensure greater substantive engagement of civil society in the COSP and meet the intent of the disability movement’s slogan, “Nothing about us, without us!”. The CSCM supported civil society engagement in the following ways:
  • Substantive input to the background documents of the Conference round tables:
  1. Roundtable One: National fiscal space, public-private partnerships and international cooperation for strengthening the implementation of the CRPD. Read here
  2. Roundtable Two: Women and girls with disabilities. Read here
  3. Roundtable Three: Political participation and equal recognition before the law. Read here
  • Running open and transparent procedures to select civil society representatives for the opening and closing sessions, and co-chairs for each thematic round table (see below)
  • Organization of the Civil Society CRPD Forum (see below)
For more information on the coordination mechanism, please see the CSCM Terms of Reference.
More than 250 persons with disabilities and their representative organizations, broader civil society actors, donors, governments and UN agencies participated in the Civil Society CRPD Forum 2018, which this year was transformed into a Day of General Discussion on Articles 4(3) and 33(3). The Day of General Discussions is usually held in Geneva during sessions of the CRPD Committee.
The Forum had participation of organisations of persons with disabilities, and was opened by IDA Chair, Colin Allen, President of the Conference, H.E. Georgi Panayotov, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Bulgaria to the United Nations, Theresia Degener, CRPD Committee Chair and Catalina Devandas, Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
In case you missed it!:

4. Conference of States Parties to the CRPD, 12 – 14 June 2017

Civil Society Representatives
Colin Allen, nominated by the Civil Society Coordination Mechanism to speak on behalf of civil society, made a powerful speech during the Opening Session of the Conference. Watch the Opening Session of the Conference of States Parties to the CRPD (Colin Allen begins at 56:45). 
  • Round Table One: Co-chaired by civil society representative Setareki Macanawi. Watch round table one.
  • Round Table Two: Co-chaired by civil society representative Anjlee Agarwal. Watch round table two.
  • Round Table Three: Co-chaired by civil society representative Connie Laurin-Bowie. Watch round table three.
  • Closing Session: Presentation by civil society representative Zhiying Ma. Watch the closing session.
Side Events
During the course of the Conference, IDA and its members organized, participated as speakers in, or co-sponsored over 24 side-events! Themes covered diverse topics including: the UK Global Disability Summit; sexual and reproductive health and rights; the rights of migrants and refugees with disabilities, and persons with disabilities in conflict; and living independently and being included in the community. You can find the full list of side events on the IDA website.

5. CRPD Elections

On 12 June 2018, the elections for 9 seats for the CRPD Committee took place on the first day of the 11th Conference of States Parties to the CRPD. IDA congratulates the re-elected and newly elected candidates, whose term will begin in 2019. In the first round, the elected candidates were: Ms Rosemary Kayess (Australia), Ms Gertrude Fefoame (Ghana), Mr Jonas Ruskus (Lithuania), Mr Danlami Basharu (Nigeria), Mi Yeon Kim (Republic of Korea) and Markus Schefer (Switzerland). In the second round, the elected candidates were: Ms Mara Gabrilli (Brazil), Ms Risnawati Utami (Indonesia) and Ms Amalia Gamio (Mexico).

Through their votes, States sought to restore the gender balance within the membership of the Committee. IDA celebrates that the results contribute to restore gender balance to move towards gender parity in next elections. The election of the new 6 women and 3 men will lead to a composition of 12 men and 6 women on the CRPD Committee, for the period of 2019 and 2020.

Read full article here.

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