World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

France must act to end segregation and inequality

France must act to end segregation and inequality for people with disabilities, UN expert finds


GENEVA / PARIS (17 October 2017) – “To achieve equal citizenship for persons with disabilities, France needs to end segregation and move towards inclusive services and support in the community”, UN disability rights expert Catalina Devandas warned.

“While the country invests significant resources to address inequalities faced by people with disabilities, efforts in this area are highly compartmentalized and segregated,” said the Special Rapporteur in a statement following her official visit to assess the situation in the country.

Ms. Devandas recognized France’s work to include children with disabilities in mainstream schools, but said the system would need a significant transformation to achieve inclusive education for all. Most children in residential institutions did not receive quality education, while others received no education at all, she noted.

The Special Rapporteur expressed serious concern about the high number of French people with disabilities living in residential institutions - at least 300,000 in France itself and another 6,500, including 1,500 children, in Belgium.

“People with disabilities, including those with high support needs, have the right to live in their communities, to choose their place of residence and with whom they live,” Ms. Devandas stressed.

She urged the Government to close all institutions as soon as possible and switch to community-based services, including adequate housing. Moving children out of institutions should be a political priority, she added, and the Government should consider a moratorium on new admissions.

“France is a country with a strong tradition of republican and democratic values, resting on the ideals of ‘freedom, equality and fraternity’. Disability policies in France need to embrace these ideals to guarantee the full inclusion of all people with disabilities in society, endowing them with more opportunities to live the lives they choose to live.

“Full citizenship won’t be a reality until some 750,000 people with disabilities who are under guardianship or tutorship in France, many of whom are deprived of their right to vote, have their legal capacity restored”, she added.

Ms. Devandas also noted that autistic people and those with psychosocial disabilities are systematically hospitalized or receive psychiatric treatment without consent. She reminded the government that deprivation of legal capacity and any type of involuntary treatment are contrary to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

“France needs to carefully revise and transform its system to truly provide inclusive responses and solutions for all people with disabilities, manage and allocate resources more efficiently, and provide specialized services and support in the community on an equal basis with others,” Ms. Devandas said, urging the government to include people with disabilities in all decision-making processes.

During her 10-day visit, the Special Rapporteur visited Paris, Lyon, Marseille and Avignon, where she met senior Government officials, representatives of independent institutions, people with disabilities, organizations, and service providers. She also visited several psychiatric facilities, segregated institutions for people with disabilities, a school with inclusive practices, and an inclusive housing project.

The UN Special Rapporteur will present a report to the Human Rights Council in March 2019 on the main findings of her visit.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


Palestinian Ministry of Health: Developments In The Health Situation During The Israeli Aggression On The Cities & Governorates Of The Gaza Strip
For the second day in a row, the Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip continues by targeting overcrowded residential areas and neighborhoods, as the death toll rose to 13 citizens, including a 5-year-old girl and a 23-year-old woman... More>>


UN: Horn Of Africa Faces Most ‘Catastrophic’ Food Insecurity In Decades, Warns WHO

The World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Tuesday that the Greater Horn of Africa is experiencing one of the worst famines of the last 70 years... More>>

FAO: Warns 90 Per Cent Of Earth’s Topsoil At Risk By 2050
A full 90 per cent of the Earth’s precious topsoil is likely to be at risk by 2050, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, FAO...
More>>


Somalia: ‘We Cannot Wait For Famine To Be Declared; We Must Act Now’
Rising acute food insecurity in Somalia has caused more than 900,000 people to flee their homes in search of humanitarian assistance since January last year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned... More>>

UN: American West Faces Water And Power Shortages Due To Climate Crisis
Two of the largest reservoirs in the United States are at dangerously low levels due to the climate crisis and overconsumption of water, which could affect water and electricity supply for millions in six western states and Mexico, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) warned on Tuesday... More>>



Singapore: UN Experts Call For Immediate Moratorium On Executions For Drug Offences

UN experts* today condemned the execution of Nazeri Bin Lajim, a 64-year-old Malay Singaporean national convicted of drug offenses and urged the Government of Singapore to halt plans to execute individuals on death row for drug related charges... More>>