Disability Conventions

United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and its Optional Protocol was adopted on 13th December 2006 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, and was opened for signature on 30th March 2007. The Convention follows decades of work by the United Nations to change attitudes and approaches to persons with disabilities. It takes to a new height the movement from viewing persons with disabilities as ‘objects’ of charity, medical treatment and social protection towards viewing persons with disabilities as ‘ subjects’ with rights, who are capable of claiming those rights and making decisions for their lives based on their free and informed consent as well as being active members of society.

The CRPD reaffirms that all persons with all types of disabilities must enjoy all human rights and fundamental freedoms. It clarifies and qualifies how all categories of rights apply to persons with disabilities and identifies areas where adaptations have to be made for persons with disabilities to effectively exercise their rights and areas where their rights have been violated, and where protection of rights must be reinforced.

Singapore became a signatory of the convention on the 30th November 2012 and ratified it on 18 July 2013. The Agreement came into effect for Singapore on 18 August 2013. Singapore will implement the CRPD through the Enabling Masterplan 2012-2016 .

Guiding Principles of the Convention

There are eight guiding principles that underlie the Convention and each one of its specific articles:
  1. Respect for inherent dignity, individual autonomy including the freedom to make one’s own choices, and independence of persons
  2. Non-discrimination
  3. Full and effective participation and inclusion in society
  4. Respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity
  5. Equality of opportunity
  6. Accessibility
  7. Equality between men and women
  8. Respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabilities and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities

For information on the CRPD in Singapore, please click here.

For more information about CRPD, please visit the United Nations website.

To download a copy of the CRPD, please click here.