Article 10 - Right to life
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United States of America
International Disability Caucus
Comments, proposals and amendments submitted electronically
Proposed Modifications to Draft Article 8
RIGHT TO LIFE1
States Parties reaffirm the inherent right to life of all persons with disabilities, and shall take all necessary measures to ensure its effective enjoyment by them.2
Footnotes for Draft Article 8
1: There were different views expressed within the Working Group as to whether the Convention should include an article on the right to life, and if so, its content.
2: In the context of the discussion on this draft Article, some members of the Working Group suggested that the Convention should contain a separate draft article on the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities in armed conflict, similar to the approach taken in Article 38(4) of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. It was also suggested that such an article could deal more broadly with the protection of the rights of groups at particular risk.
Draft Article 8
RIGHT TO LIFE
States Parties reaffirm the inherent right to life of all persons with disabilities, shall take all necessary measures to ensure its effective enjoyment by them, and shall ensure that disability, or perceived quality of life, shall not serve as a basis for infringement of the right to life.
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INTERNATIONAL DISABILITY CAUCUS
- Information sheet
The right to life, survival and development:
People with disabilities at all stages of life, particularly newborn babies are killed based on their disability. Some bioethicists argue that some newborns are not considered to have legal personhood because of the absence of a certain level of cognitive ability. Accordingly, they do not have any rights whatsoever, including the right to life, survival and development.
In addition, it is argued that people with disabilities are “suffering” or have a perceived low quality of life, and therefore it is in their best interest to die.; for example there are cases of deafblind children being left to die.
Persons with disabilities are often faced with low expectations and constraints which inhibit their individual development as formulated in article 22 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Securing the safety of persons with disabilities under natural and humanitarian disasters including wars and armed conflict:
It is important to underline situations where the lives of persons with disabilities are particularly at risk. One example would be that there was very little information about people with disabilities in the recent Tsunami disaster. People with disabilities are not receiving aid or medical assistance and have probably been left to die.
The Caucus Text uses the word “secure the safety of” instead of the word “protect” since forms of protection can be and are construed to mean protecting persons with disabilities from suffering by ending their life.
here are various ways of dealing the placement of this issue We propose either moving it in a separate article focusing on situations of particular risk, or placing in article 4 as a general obligation.
- Draft Proposal
1. States Parties recognize and protect the inherent right to life of all persons with disabilities, and shall take all necessary measures to ensure its effective enjoyment by girls and boys, women and men in all stages of life.
2. The right to life also includes the right to survive and to develop on equal basis with others.
3. Disability is not a justification for the termination of life.
4. States Parties shall undertake effective measures to the prohibition of compulsory abortion at the instance of the State based on the pre-natal diagnosis of disability.
5. States Parties shall also prohibit all medical, biological and other experiments reducing the quality of life of persons with disabilities, or seeking to remedy a disability against an individual’s will.
6. In case of natural and humanitarian disasters, including wars and armed conflicts, states parties shall secure safety of girls and boys, women and men with disabilities on equal basis with others, taking into account each individual's needs.
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