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UN Committee Expresses “Deep Concerns” about the Rights of Canadian Children with Disabilities and Issues Recommendations for Action

 

Earlier this week the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child issued its Concluding Observations on Canada’s Third and Fourth Report on the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

CRC Joint Submission - CACL, II, IDA - IMAGE

Over the past year the Canadian Association for Community Living has worked together with Inclusion International and the International Disability Alliance to bring attention to issues faced by Canadian children with disabilities in securing their rights and issued a joint submission to the Committee to inform its advance preparation for Canada’s Report. The joint submission document can be found here
 
The Committee questioned Canada on a number of issues that were raised by CACL such as inclusive education, supports to individuals and families, prevention of violence against children with disabilities and the need for data collection and analysis to inform policy development. Children with disabilities are referenced throughout the Committee’s Concluding Observations as a group that requires particular attention. The Committee expressed deep concerns and issued recommendations that Canada:

 

  • Establish as soon as possible a system of global and disaggregated data collection on children with disabilities, which will enable the State party and all its provinces and territories to establish inclusive policies and equal opportunities for all children with disabilities;
  • Ensure that all children with disabilities have access, in all provinces and territories, to inclusive education and are not forced to attend segregated schools only designed for children with disabilities;

 

  • Ensure that children with disabilities, and their families, are provided with all necessary support and services in order to ensure that financial constraints are not an obstacle in accessing services and that household incomes and parental employment are not affected;
  • Take all necessary measures to protect children with disabilities from all forms of violence.

 
CACL looks forward to working with its members, the Government of Canada and with other civil society organizations in Canada such as the Canadian Coalition for the Rights of Children to follow the implementation of these recommendations and work together to ensure child rights and to improve conditions to enable children with disabilities to enjoy their rights and reach their full potential.