Business Groups, Veteran Organizations, Disability Advocates Express Support for Disability Treaty Ratification

Second Hearing on Disability Treaty Taking Place this Thursday

Press Contact : 

adam_sharon@foreign.senate.gov


WASHINGTON, DC – A wide range of business groups, veteran organizations, and disability advocates are expressing their support for ratifying the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

“The momentum is building in support of ratifying the Disability Treaty from a wide ranging set of communities,” said Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. “Corporations and non-profits, veteran groups and disability rights organizations are rallying behind this effort. Ratifying the treaty will help us export American values of fairness and equality to countries around the world.”

In recent months, Chairman Menendez’s office has received support from approximately 900 organizations supporting treaty ratification, and a sampling appears below.

Business Groups

Adobe

“As countries around the world recognize that providing accessible content and technology is critical for an inclusive and self-sufficient populace, Adobe and other technology providers are positioned to help content-providers efficiently address accessibility requirements. Accomplishing this goal at a global scale is possible only when accessibility standards are harmonized, and ratification of this treaty by the United States will underscore that accessibility is an area in which international coordination is essential.”

Chamber of Commerce CEO Thomas J. Donohue

“The United States is the world leader in developing effective policy to ensure that individuals with disabilities have equal opportunity in the workplace in society as a whole. The Chamber is proud of the role that it has played in helping to formulate this policy by engaging in cooperative efforts with the disability community. Consistent with these efforts, the Chamber believes that ratification of the Convention will not just lead to greater access and opportunity for individuals with disabilities throughout the world, but will also be beneficial to business.”

Coca Cola

“The United States and our business community should continue to be the world leader in protecting the rights of those with disabilities so that there are equal opportunities to work and live with dignity in societies around the world.”

Consumer Electronics Association

“U.S. ratification of the CRPD would encourage greater demand for U.S. companies’ skills and services as fellow nations begin to adhere to the new international standards.”

DIRECTV

“The United States should continue being the world leader in protecting the rights of persons with disabilities. As an international company doing business in over 30 countries and territories, DIRECTV proudly fosters diversity and inclusiveness throughout the Americas.”

NASCAR

“The Convention reflects core American values such as dignity of the individual, access to justice, the importance of family decision-making and access to appropriate healthcare…Such leadership will not only further our nation’s vision for global human rights, but assist the millions of people with disabilities from the United States such as military veterans, students, scientists, tourists and business leaders, and their families who live, do business, and travel abroad.”

Veteran Organizations

The American Legion

“As the leading veterans’ service organization, The American Legion believes the CRPD would continue this tradition [American leadership on access equality] by removing barriers and allowing American veterans with disabilities more access to work, serve, travel, and live abroad… Our service members returning from abroad with disabilities should not be denied these opportunities in the global economy.”

Air Force Sergeants Association

“Ratification of the CRPD basically exports the excellence of America’s ADA to the rest of the world. There is no cost to the taxpayer and no follow-on legislation required. By virtue of our ADA, we already exceed the CRPD. By ratifying this treaty, Americans can expect to see standards around the world rise to meet those already in place in the United States.”

VetsFirst

“Disabled veterans must have every opportunity to reintegrate into their communities when facing the challenges associated with living with a disability… Now, the United States must ratify the CRPD to foster the opportunities that will increase access around the world for a new generation of disabled veterans.”

Wounded Warriors Project

“Driven by our vision to foster the most successful, well-adjusted generation of veterans in our nation’s history we urge … a resolution supporting ratification of the CRPD…The CRPD is a critical tool to help guarantee that our veterans and service members enjoy the same rights outside the United States as they do here at home.”

Disability and Human Rights Advocates

Access Living

“Through ratifying the CRPD and thus entering the roundtable afforded to the countries who have also ratified the CRPD, the United States can provide and influence guidance on the implementation of the treaty around the world. We can lend our expertise as more countries develop their own disability rights laws. Disability knows no borders. Neither should freedom, equality and inclusion.”

American Red Cross

“As an organization that meets pressing needs with compassion, the American Red Cross believes the CRPD is consistent with our core values and determination to access populations often overlooked during humanitarian emergencies. The U.S. now has an opportunity to lead by example to ensure that all people with disabilities can access critical programs and services to preserve their health, further their education, and receive assistance and protection during humanitarian crises.”

Autism National Committee

“Autism is found throughout the world in people of all racial, ethnic and social backgrounds… many foreign countries do not recognize the existence of autism.  In those countries, people with autism … may be assumed incapable of learning.  They may be institutionalized, kept away from their families and communities.  They may be ostracized.  They may be neglected and abused…. Being part of the CRPD process will enable America to help build a vital international framework to protect the human rights of people with autism and other disabilities.”

American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees

“Like the landmark civil rights law, the Americans with Disabilities Act, this Convention reflects core American values such as upholding the dignity of the individual, and providing access to appropriate healthcare and support services. Ratification provides our nation with an opportunity to help support the development of disability rights for the one billion individuals with disabilities around the world.”

Amnesty International

“By ratifying the CRPD, the United States will continue to be a leader in setting the standards for ensuring the human rights of individuals with disabilities, as it has under the ADA and other domestic laws.”

Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD)

The Convention reaffirms the principles of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), including equality, non-discrimination, inclusion in society, accessibility, and respect for inherent dignity.  It seeks to ensure that countries across the globe provide people with disabilities the same rights as everyone else in order to live full, satisfying and productive lives.  To this end, the CRPD will create greater access for Americans serving, working, traveling, and studying abroad.”

Handicap International

“Every day, we witness the power of this treaty. While the opposition sometimes says that the treaty isn’t strong enough, we see it as vital to removing barriers. In eastern Ethiopia, our inclusive education project, with is part-funded by USAID, has allowed children with disabilities to attend school for the first time— and they are thriving! In Tunisia, Handicap International supports disabled persons organizations that have worked hard to see disability rights included in Tunisia’s newest draft constitution. In Bangladesh, it gives us another way to encourage villages to prepare inclusive plans for disasters—warning systems that alert the Deaf community, storm shelters that everyone can reach, and plans to ensure that people who cannot flee on their own are helped when danger approaches.”

Human Rights Watch

“More than half of the world – 138 countries – have ratified the CRPD and are working on implementation. As a state party, the US would have greater opportunities to share and influence its own best practices and achievements in protecting disability rights.”

“Adoption of the treaty would build on the legacy of the United States of empowering people with disabilities while also enabling the US to increase its credibility as a global leader on this issue.”

Interfaith Disability Advocacy Coalition

We firmly support the ratification of the CRPD because it ensures the humane and moral treatment of people with disabilities around the world. Without laws like the ADA abroad, millions of children and adults with disabilities are denied the enrichment of a family life, community resources, or access to the most basic civil rights. The CRPD supports the full inclusion of people with disabilities in society and promotes their right to live independently and with dignity.”

National Federation of the Blind

“While the journey of Americans with disabilities toward full equality in our society is not over, we are much further along than our disabled brothers and sisters in many other nations. It is imperative that we show leadership and remain engaged as other nations move towards more enlightened attitudes, laws, and policies toward their citizens with disabilities. The United States has a unique opportunity to provide and influence the implementation of the treaty around the world and to lend our expertise as more countries develop their own disability rights laws.”

The Arc

“The United States’ ratification of the treaty will continue our country’s distinguished tradition as a world leader for people with disabilities as evidenced by the ADA… Such participation will not only further our nation’s vision for global human rights, but assist the millions of people with disabilities from the United States such as military veterans, students, scientists, tourists and business leaders, and their families who live, do business, and travel abroad.” 

“American citizens with disabilities should have the same opportunity to benefit from a world economy that is fully accessible to all people.”

UNICEF: US Fund

“Without US leadership, millions of children with disabilities will remain stuck in institutions rather than with families, excluded from schools and health clinics, and lacking access to the most basic civil rights like a birth certificate or even a name. Ratifying the CRPD would strengthen our authority and our ability as Americans to help these children.”

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