Non-Governmental Organisations

Recommendation adopted on 29 April 2009
CONF/PLE(2009)REC7

‘The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities’

The Conference of INGOs,

    - Noting that the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities came into force on 3 May 2008, and that it is the first treaty of the 21st century relating to human rights;

    - Noting that the fundamental rights set out in that Convention directly concern persons with disabilities, who are estimated to number between 80 and 120 million in Europe, and indirectly concern their families;

    - Taking note of Recommendation Rec(2006)5 of the Committee of Ministers to member States on the Council of Europe Action Plan 2006-20151 relating to action to be taken to enable persons with disabilities to exercise their rights;

    - Taking note of Recommendation 1854 (2009)2, adopted by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on 26 January 2009, and of the report which accompanies it;

    - Considering that the participation of persons with disabilities is a vital component of social cohesion in every society, particularly in times of crisis;

Observes that, to date, only a very small number of Council of Europe member States have ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities3.

Recommends that the Committee of Ministers and Parliamentary Assembly make sure that all member States sign and ratify this Convention as soon as possible.

The Conference of INGOs, for its part, undertakes to do everything possible to promote signature and ratification of the aforementioned Convention.


1 Recommendation Rec(2006)5 of the Committee of Ministers to member States on the Council of Europe Action Plan to promote the rights and full participation of people with disabilities in society: improving the quality of life of people with disabilities in Europe 2006-2015.

2 Recommendation 1854 (2009) on Access to rights for people with disabilities and their full and active participation in society.

3 Countries which have ratified the United Nations Convention to date: Austria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Italy, San Marino, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.