Published On: Tue, Dec 10th, 2013

CARICOM strengthens commitment to persons with disabilities in the Caribbean

CaricomThe Caribbean Community (CARICOM) has strengthened its commitment to protecting the rights of persons with disabilities in the Caribbean with the signing of the Declaration of Pétion Ville on Friday 6 December in Haiti.

In the Declaration, the CARICOM Member States reiterated their commitment to the implementation of the Kingston Accord on the Responsibilities of States with respect to Persons with Disabilities, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Inter-American Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities, in accordance with the Constitution and laws of respective Member States.

They have agreed “to address with renewed energy and dedication the development of legal frameworks at the national level made through adherence to international and regional instruments to promote and protect the rights and needs of persons with disabilities.”

Additionally the Declaration stated that the signatories would continue efforts to build inclusive societies for both present and future generations of persons with disabilities.  It also recognized the vulnerability of women and girls with disabilities, who are often more exposed to violence, abuse, mistreatment and discrimination and gave a commitment to also pay attention to the needs of men and boys with disabilities, particularly in respect of education, training, health and employment opportunities.

The Declaration also addressed the needs of older persons with disabilities and committed to integrate policies and programmes that prepare societies to support the continued independence, productivity and well-being of aging populations in development planning.

It also included a resolve to establish a common definition of disability and to develop and implement a common framework for national and regional data collection, to promote the standardization of measurement of progress in addressing the needs of persons with disabilities.

For more details on the Declaration of Pétion Ville, please visit the CARISOM Secretariat website,  www.caricom.org where the full Declaration may be viewed.

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