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PWDA Alert
  Friday 19 April 2013

Thursday 18 April 2013
 
Today was the last day of formal meetings and activities for the representatives of the Australian CRPD Civil Society Parallel Report Group.  Here is a summary of activities:
 
“In the morning, we met with Ms Maureen Teo, the Desk Officer for the Asia and Pacific region of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).  Ms Teo provided information about the role of OHCHR in the region and information about the work of the OHCHR Pacific Desk Officer based in Suva, Fiji.  We discussed key human rights issues contained in the shadow or parallel report, Disability Rights Now and how the OHCHR could engage on these issues in the region.
 
We also met with UN CRPD Committee member, Ms Edah Wangechi Maina.  Ms Maina is the Rapporteur for Australia, which means that she has the lead role in coordinating the CRPD Committee’s activities for the review of Australia.  We had a very productive meeting clarifying points from Disability Rights Now and our submission to the List of Issues. 
 
Therese Sands (Australian CRPD Civil Society Parallel Report Group representative) outside the UN building, Palais de Nations with the flags of all the member countries.
Therese Sands (Australian CRPD Civil Society Parallel Report Group representative) outside the UN building, Palais de Nations with the flags of all the member countries.
Ms Maina was particularly interested in the effect of the interpretative declarations to CRPD articles 12, 17 and 18, the situation for people with psychosocial disability and the mental health system, the situation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with disability and the re-institutionalisation of people with disability in Australia.  We have agreed to provide some additional information to her and to assist her in any way we can in the lead up to the September review.
 
In the afternoon, we went to the offices of the International Disability Alliance (IDA).  We joined representatives of IDA member organisations for a presentation from Ms Deborah Perry and Ms Christina Behrendt from the International Labour Organisation (ILO).  The presentation included information on the ILO Conventions and standards relevant to employment and decent work for people with disability”.
 
On Friday, Therese Sands will meet with Mr Simon Walker, Chief of the OHCHR Civil, Political, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Section to discuss the work of this section and its relationship to the issues from Disability Rights Now.  She will then join the representatives of IDA member organisations for a workshop on budgeting, resourcing and analysis for implementation of the CRPD, before flying back to Sydney.
 
Therese Sands
On behalf of the Australian CRPD Civil Society Parallel Report Group
People with Disability Australia (PWDA)
www.pwd.org.au (02) 9370 3100 1800 422 015