Law academics make recommendations to all party parliamentary group on disability

5 December 2017

Human rights

Two Law academics were invited to discuss the human rights of disabled people in the UK at an all-party parliamentary group this November.

Dr Emily Kakoullis and Dr Lucy Series were invited to present at the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Disability which took place on 22 November at Westminster. The cross-party group consists of Members of Parliament (MPs) and Peers from the House of Lords, and focuses on issues that affect all disabled people. It is a large and active group founded in 1969, which provides a valuable opportunity for MPs and Peers to engage with individuals and disability organisations outside Parliament who share an interest in disability related issues.

Dr Kakoullis and Dr Series presented on the background and aims of the United Nations (UN) Universal Periodic Review (UPR); the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) Committee’s Confidential Inquiry and Concluding Observations; the current impact and future options for the CRPD in the UK; and on the possible effects on disabled people of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union.

Dr Kakoullis and Dr Series made five recommendations:

  1. The UK and the regional governments undertake a comprehensive cross-cutting legislative and policy review against the CRPD’s provisions, and that disabled people’s organisations (DPOs) should be closely involved and participate in this review.
  2. The UK and devolved governments should refresh their disability strategies in line with the cross-cutting legislative and policy review and the CRPD Committee’s recommendations.
  3. The UK and its regional governments should commit to a freestanding and justiciable right and cross-cutting policies to implement the right to independent living and being included in the community contained in the CRPD.
  4. The full incorporation of the CRPD into domestic law would be ideal; as an alternative, we recommend that the Equality Act 2010 should be amended to introduce a requirement for public bodies to have ‘due regard’ to the CRPD.
  5. A cumulative impact assessment should be conducted on the impact of welfare reforms, and an equality impact assessment about the impact of the proposed and contingency plans for the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union on disabled people.