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SHATIL Takes First Steps in Urging Ratification of International Disabilities Convention

On September 3rd and 4th, SHATIL held an invitational two-day study seminar on Incorporation into Domestic Israeli Law of the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

The seminar aimed to promote the ratification of the convention (which Israel signed in 2006 but has not yet ratified) and promote civil society supervision and implementation mechanisms regarding this convention. The seminar strongly emphasized empowering individuals with disabilities as advocates on their own behalf.

Abbas Abbas, director of Almanarah – Association for the Advancement of the Blind in Arab Society in Israel, said: "The seminar was an exceptional experience for me, sharpening my knowledge in many areas. Especially important were the practical ideas of the participants about how to implement the CRPD. The unique mosaic of academics, people from the establishment and from the field at the seminar points to wall-to-wall interest in the CRPD, in advancing the rights of people with disabilities and in government, academic and civil society responsibility for its implementation."

Clockwise From front left: Hamdan Jeaw'I of Lighting Candles (Palestinian territories), Michael Stein of Harvard Project on Disabilities, Michael Waterstone of Lloyola School of Law and a representative from the Israeli NGO Survivor Corps.

Guest lecturers included international law experts from the United States. Participants represented civil society organizations and government ministries. Also in attendance was the Commissioner of Equal Opportunities for People with Disabilities. 

Based on the outcomes of the seminar, SHATIL will provide assistance to civil society organizations in promoting the ratification and implementation of the convention.

The seminar was held in cooperation with the Minerva Center for Human Rights of the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University, the Equal Rights Commission for Persons with Disabilities of the Ministry of Justice, the Harvard Project on Disability of Harvard Law School and Survivor Corps. NIF Grantee B'zchut, which had input into the formulation of the CRPD, also participated in the seminar.
 

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