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Daily summary of discussions related to Article
PROMOTION OF POSITIVE ATTITUDES
UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities
Fourth session of the Ad Hoc Committee - Daily Summary
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Volume 5, #3
August 25, 2004
ARTICLE 5: PROMOTION OF POSITIVE ATTITUDES
Chile supported Mexico’s proposed new title for this article
“Creation of a culture of respect and inclusion” and Uganda’s proposal
for 5(1)(a) to add “needs, potential and contribution to society.” The
phrase “practices that are incompatible with the objective” should be
incorporated into 5(1)(b). It proposes alternative texts, for 5(1)(c):
“to promote a culture with respect to disabled persons as an object
of law and compatible with the objectives of the convention” removing
the reference to “image”; and for 5(2)(a): “Nurture public awareness
campaigns and policies to promote attitudes that are receptive and positive
towards the rights of PWD.” It supports the Costa Rican proposal to
incorporate the phase “in their population” in 2(b), and the addition
of the term “families” in 5(2)(d).
Cameroon (on behalf of the Africa Group) recommended
the following alternative title for Article 5: “Promotion of Positive
Attitudes Towards Persons with Disabilities, Creation and Raising of
Awareness.” The term “appropriate” should be substituted for “immediate”
in 5(1). 5(1)(a) should be amended to read: “Raise awareness throughout
society regarding disability in various forms and persons with disabilities
and their needs, potential and contributions to society and foster a
culture of respect for PWD and their human rights.” The African Group
recommends more detailed wording in 5(1)(b) to read, following “prejudices,”
“and practices whether cultural, or other which discriminate against
persons with disabilities,” in line with the Kenya proposal. 5(1)(c)
should begin with the term “Portray”, include the Thai proposed language
“irrespective of type, severity and complexity of their disabilities”
and the Philippines proposal to add “and responsibilities” after “rights
and freedoms.” 5(2)(a) should begin: “Initiating, promoting and maintaining
an effective public social awareness campaign designed to nurture respect
and protect the rights of persons with disabilities…” 5(2)(b) should
begin: “Developing and maintaining programmes of awareness in their
population…” The term “portray PWD in a manner” should substitute for
“project an image of PWD” in 5(2)(c). The term “families” should be
included in 5(2)(d).
Costa Rica supports the Africa Group’s proposed new
title. It does not support the reference to “negative” stereotypes in
5(1)(b). The language in 5(1)(c) should be retained incorporating proposals
of New Zealand, Canada and the Philippines and without the amendments
proposed by Thailand. 5(2)(a) and (b) should be merged. A new sub-paragraph
should be added, addressing the obligation of States to make the public
aware of the Convention and its contents, and the intention to eradicate
stereotypes of disability and PWD.
New Zealand highlighted the barriers posed by society’s
knowledge, attitudes and related behaviors and the need to address these
issues in a separate provision. Like Mexico, Costa Rica and the EU,
New Zealand calls for a reference in 5(1)(a) to fostering respect for
PWD. It supports in principle the Thailand position on 5(1)(b) referring
to “irrespective of type of disability”, though will suggest alternative
language. So as to encompass areas in which PWD face barriers, the phrase
“in all areas of life” should be added to 5(1)(b). As noted by Canada
5(2) is too prescriptive and should be simplified. A public awareness
campaign is only one of many actions States could take, therefore this
reference in 5(2)(a) should be substituted with the phrase: “nurturing
awareness of and respect for the rights of PWD.” Article 5(2)(d) on
working in partnership with PWD does not align with the chapeau and
should be shifted to Article 4.
Japan strongly supports the WG text, and would oppose
any weakening of it such as changing the language in the chapeau in
5(1) from “immediate and effective” to “appropriate,” and inserting
“negative” before “stereotypes” in 5(1)(b).
Jamaica supported adding the qualifications “negative”
before “stereotypes” and “positive” before “image” in 5(1)(b). The term
”receptiveness to” in 5(2)(a) should be replaced with “respect for the
rights of PWD.”
The EU accepted a separate Article but recommended
it be moved to 24bis. It maintains 5(2) is unnecessarily detailed, with
the exception of 5(2)(c) which could be moved to 5(1).
Mexico affirmed its support for the language in 5(1)
and opposition to any weakening of the text, which is in line with other
conventions such as CEDAW. Measures must be immediate and effective.
The various forms of disability do not need to be mentioned. Practices
that may be prejudicial to PWD do not need to be specified as this would
result in leaving some out; the Chilean proposal to reference adverse
practices may be a good solution. The type or gravity of disability
does not need to be mentioned in 5(1)(c). Language in 5(2) should not
be prescriptive and the detail in 5(2)(d) may be unnecessary. However
it is necessary to provide some references, such as to public awareness
campaigns and stereotypes.
Canada supported New Zealand’s proposed amendments
Unidentified speaker [Portion of tape missing] recommended
amending the title to read “Inculcation and Promotion of Positive Attitudes
Towards PWD.” The term “modify” should replace “combat” in 1(b), and
“inculcate” should be added before “nurture” in 5(2)(a). It supports
Uganda’s proposal in 5(2)(d) to insert the word “families.”
Thailand opposed adding “negative” before “stereotypes”
in 5(1)(b). It affirmed its position in 5(1)(c) to reference “type,
severity and complexity” of disability, as this language is sensitive
to the need to cover all disabilities without creating any hierarchy.
Ethiopia proposed referencing artistic works and publications
that may offend the dignity of PWD given that writers, authors and composers
present PWD in a negative way.
India supported the Australian proposal to amend the
chapeau to “appropriate and effective measures.” The term “create awareness”
is preferred in 5(1)(a) over “raise awareness.” The term “promote” should
replace “foster” in 5(1)(b), and the proposal of Trinidad and Tobago
to combat “negative” stereotypes should be retained. Public awareness
campaigns in 5(2)(a) should be “comprehensive” rather than “effective”
and be designed to “foster” rather than “nurture”; 5(2)(b) repeats this
point and should be deleted. India support Uganda’s proposal to add
“families” to 5(2)(d).
China highlighted the absence of goals of achieving
self-reliance and self-respect, and recommended that assisting PWD in
achieving these goals should be added to 5(1)(a). In addition 5(2)(c)bis
should read: “Encouraging and assisting PWD to have self-esteem.”
The Republic of Korea cautioned against paternalistic
language like “help” or “assist”, and like Japan and Thailand opposed
the term “negative” to qualify “stereotypes” in 5(1)(b). Article 5 should
be placed later in the convention.
Bahrain recommended adding a stand-alone paragraph
that emphasizes the need for training and awareness-raising in order
to resist negative stereotypes. Training should be continuous and oriented
towards a variety of stakeholders such as medical staff, journalists,
teachers, and activists working in the field of disability.
Lebanon agreed with the Bahrain proposal on training
and affirmed its support for the WG text which it found clear and sufficient.
Yemen agreed with the Bahrain proposal on training.
It also highlighted the need to take moral considerations into account
in the collection of data and statistics.
The Chair indicated that he understood the intervention
regarding data and statistics made by Yemen was in relation to Article
Yemen stated that its intervention was in relation
to Article 5.
Norway called for better placement of Article 5, and
in line with the EU proposal agreed that 5(2) is both repetitive and
too prescriptive and should be streamlined. The concept of fostering
respect for the rights of PWD should be incorporated into 5(1)(a).
Cameroon (on behalf of the African Group) proposed
a new sub-paragraph in 5(1): ”Combat patronizing, bullying, and neglect
on the basis of perceived incapacity of children and adults in public
service and society as a whole.”
EDF (on behalf of the International Disability Caucus)
highlighted the danger inherent in drafting this article and the need
to avoid patronizing language. In this regard it supports the proposals
of EU and others to reference the fostering of respect for PWD. It supports
retaining the language in 1(b) and avoiding the use of the term “negative”
stereotypes because positive stereotypes must also be avoided (i.e.
blind people have perfect memory, deaf people have high levels of concentration,
people with Downs syndrome are nice). In 5(1)(c) it opposes the proposed
wording by Thailand for 5(1)(c), but sees merit in that of the Philippines’.
It rejects the proposal to reference “families” in 5(2)(d), while noting
that families are a target group for awareness raising campaigns.
DPI emphasized the importance of awareness-raising
as a pre-condition for the equalization of opportunities for PWD, appearing
at the beginning of the UN Standard Rules, and of working in partnership
with PWD in awareness raising as stated in 5(2)(d). The concepts of
partnership and participation do merit mention in this Article though
they appear elsewhere in the convention text. If there are to be any
principles that can and should appear in specific contexts throughout
the convention, it is these.
Volume 5, #7
August 31, 2004
AFTERNOON SESSION: INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS
ARTICLE 5: PROMOTION OF POSITIVE ATTITUDES TO PWD
The Coordinator thanked Mr. Ainchil and the facilitation group
for its discussions on Article 4 this morning which made good progress.
Mr Ainchil has put together text for circulation based on these discussions,
and it is hoped the group will be able to meet further on Thursday to
complete its work. The flexibility shown by delegates in achieving momentum
at the end of the morning’s discussions is appreciated, and it is hoped
that momentum can be maintained here and in future discussions. A point
was raised this morning about the linkage between Article 4 and 1, and
we should be mindful of linkages between articles. Delegates should
not be concerned about such linkages, or prejudicing their positions
by accepting more general language in those articles at this time. Nothing
is agreed until everything is agreed.
At this stage the group will move to Article 5, and as this article
is more focused the discussion should be able to be more focused than
that for Article 4. This article will be facilitated by Ambassador Rowe
of Sierra Leone. Discussion will proceed on a paragraph by paragraph
basis to speed progress, though proposals related to finer points of
drafting will not be examined now. Article 5(2)(d) addressing “working
in partnership with PWD” has already been taken care of in Article 4.
A fundamental question is how much detail should be added to the WG
draft text? The more detail is added the closer the text becomes to
a “programme of action” rather then a treaty elaborating rights. More
detail will not necessarily make the treaty better or stronger, or provide
greater clarity which is something we should be seeking. Delegates may
wish to consider whether “more is less.”
Several proposals have been submitted for consideration in Article 5(1):
 adding “their needs, potential and contribution to society” at the
end of 5(1)(a), followed by “and foster respect for their rights”; 
in 5(1)(b) expanding the obligation to combat stereotypes and prejudices,
to encompass “cultural or religious practices that discriminate against
PWD,” or “in all areas of life”;  in 5(1)(c) adding “irrespective
of type, severity and complexity of their disability”;  a proposal
from at least 1 delegation for a new 5(1)(c) bis which would expand
the promotion of positive attitudes to promote those attitudes amongst
PWD themselves as to themselves; and  5(1)(c) ter on training and
Japan strongly supported the WG text as is, and is
flexible on the proposals highlighted.
Canada supported the EU amendments provided in the
Compilation text. The Trinidad and Tobago and Kenyan submissions for
5(1)(b) regarding cultural practices are unnecessary in light of amendments
to Article 4 made this morning. In 5(1)(c) Canada would prefer “portray
PWD” not “promote an image of.”
Costa Rica supported the proposals noted by the Coordinator.
It also proposes to include a provision in 5(1) on the obligation of
States Parties “to promote knowledge by the general public of the provisions
contained in this Convention, to promote positive attitudes, in particular
between PWD, their families and care-givers.” It is flexible regarding
placement and wording of this proposal but would like to see the concept
Lebanon supported the Kenyan proposal to take into
consideration cultural practices inconsistent with convention. It wonders
whether “and dignity” could be added after “foster the rights” in 5(1)(a).
Norway agreed “less is more” in this context and it
favors the WG text. It agrees with the issue raised by Uganda in 5(1)(a)
that PWD have not only needs but contributions to make, but feels this
is adequately addressed in 5(1)(c). 5(1)(b) should be kept more general
and not go into further detail of types of practices. It supports Canada’s
change of “promote” to “portray” in 5(1)(c). It does not support the
Thai proposal to delineate PWD by type, severity or complexity of disability
as “PWD” is sufficient.
Cameroon supported the proposals noted by the Coordinator.
However, the African Group introduced a series of wording amendments
for Article 5 which it reserves the right to discuss during future consultations.
The Netherlands (EU) agreed that the AHC ”shouldn’t
overburden this article with too much detail,” and it could benefit
from less detail. Paragraphs 5(1) and 5(2)(c) are sufficient, with the
other sub paragraphs being superfluous as they are addressed in previous
articles. As 5(2) is not needed, 5(2)(c) would become 5(1)(d). It welcomes
support for its proposal to “foster respect for the rights of PWD” in
5(1)(a), but does not think “dignity” is an appropriate addition here.
The EU does not support references to “needs” of PWD and is hesitant
to include any proposals that “could be seen as being of a condescending
nature.” It supports the WG text for 5(1)(b) support WG and does not
feel “negative” is appropriate to include as stereotypes themselves
should be combated. It could accept the NZ proposal “in all areas of
life.” In 5(1)(c) Canada’s “portray” is a good formulation, and it does
not see the need to include the Thai proposal.
Thailand supported “in all areas of life” in 5(1)(b),
as well as “portray” in 5(1)(c). It clarified its proposal for 5(1)(c)
was not intended to break PWD down into sub-groups, but to ensure that
different PWD are not overlooked, as this often happens in reality.
It urges delegations to consider this positive alternative to its WG
proposal to take into account the specific needs of PWD with specific
types of disabilities.
Bahrain supported the proposals noted by the Coordinator.
A new sub paragraph should also be added in 5(1) addressing training
and the need to combat “negative stereotypes.” Training for all people
providing services, such as judges and teachers will help people to
understand the needs of PWD.
Israel agreed with the approach that less is more and
articles should be as “compact” as possible. However, some additional
issues are in need of special mention “as they do not go without saying.”
It supports Uganda’s proposal in 5(1)(a) including contributions of
PWD as this is needed to help change the way society views PWD. It agrees
with the EU proposal in 5(1)(a) but in the interests of being concise
does not accept inclusion of “dignity” as proposed by Lebanon. In 5(1)(b)
it proposes to add at the end “including the perpetuation of stigmatization
of PWD in advertising.” It supports Canada & New Zealands proposal
for “portray” in 5(1)(c).
The Coordinator noted that Israel and several other
delegations have supported Uganda’s proposal in 5(1)(a) to reference
the potential and contributions to society of PWD, and asked if the
existing reference to the concept of “contribution” in 5(1)(c) would
be sufficient? Israel acknowledged the duplication and felt (c) sufficient.
Australia agreed that this and other articles should
be kept simple. In this regard it cannot accept the Thai proposal in
5(1)(c) addressing different types of disabilities, as this would be
an “over-elaboration.” It takes note of the EU’s objection to “needs”
in 5(1)(a), but could accept Uganda’s proposal focusing on contributions.
It urges caution regarding the concept of “promoting an image” in 5(1)(c)
if we are at the same time to avoid stereotypes. The focus should be
on fact and the real contributions of PWD. The Coordinator asked if
Australia would oppose “portray” in 5(1)(c). Australia responded that
its concern is with the concept of “image,” as States should not promote
image but reality. It prefers “promote the capability and contributions
Serbia and Montenegro also agreed “less is more,” and
is satisfied with the WG text for Article 5(1) with minor changes. In
5(1)(a) it supports “fostering respect for the rights of PWD,” and in
(b) inclusion of “in all areas of life.” In 5(1)(c) it prefers “portray,”
as well as widening the scope to include “and responsibilities” proposed
by the Philippines. The Coordinator requested its view on the Australian
concern that “image” in 5(1)(c) suggests promoting something that may
not be the case.
Serbia and Montenegro agrees that PWD should “not
be given some imaginary portrait” but instead presented as they are.
It finds merit in the Australian proposal but would like time to consider.
India [Inaudible response to 5(1) on tape] It supports
the title proposed by the EU and amended by Canada to read “Promotion
of positive attitudes towards PWD.”
Yemen supported Bahrain’s proposed inclusion of a new
sub paragraph on training. It proposes including in such training those
in charge of communication and mass media.
[Arabic speaker unidentified on tape] This delegation
supports the avoidance of repetition and keeping the paragraph as brief
and focused as possible. It supports Bahrain’s proposal on training.
Regarding 5(1)(c), both “portray” and “image” are weak and it supports
the Arab Group proposal using “commit.”
New Zealand explained it had proposed “portray” in
5(1)(c) because it did not want the promotion of an image to be, as
Australia noted, promoting something that might not be real. However
the Australian wording achieves this more directly. It does not support
the wording of the Thai proposal for 5(1)(c), but supports the concept
that proposal advances, namely that all people, whatever their type
of disability, be seen as contributors to society. If the “portray an
image of …” language is retained the proposal could read instead “portray
persons with all types of disabilities as capable and contributing members
… “ However, it would prefer to consider how to address this concept
in light of the new language from Australia.
Thailand could agree with “portray” in 5(1)(c), but
also suggests “recognize” instead.
The Coordinator noted the intention is 5(1)(c) is to
promote something that is real rather just an image, and to make the
general public aware of what PWD can do and actually contribute. He
asked if the concept of “awareness,” which is used in 5(1)(a) and which
implies reaction to something in reality, could be of assistance here.
Possible wording could be “promote awareness of PWD as capable and contributing
members of society … “
Uruguay supported use of “promote” in 5(1)(c). To “portray”
is a form of promotion.
Canada responded to the Coordinator’s suggestion of
“awareness” in 5(1)(c). It feels there is a distinction between raising
awareness, which is adequately covered in 1(a), and promoting the positive
reality that is inherent in PWD. It suggested “portray” to capture the
image of reflection of reality and the obligation of States to take
positive steps to reflect that reality.
However, it can also live with the Australian proposal, which capture
in essence the same idea Canada’s language was intended to reflect.
It is flexible but agrees there must be a move away from the notion
Chile supported the title proposed by Mexico, as it
is more encompassing to refer to “culture,” which would include both
positive aspects and awareness raising. It supports the Australian proposal
for 5(1)(c), and Canada’s comments. “Promote” in Spanish is the right
word, as “portray” or “describe” do not correspond to the spirit of
Costa Rica supported Australia’s proposal for the reasons
put forward by Chile relating to Spanish translation, as well as the
intention to put across reality and not an image.
China supported Canada’s proposal for “towards” in
the title. The EU proposal in (1)(a) to foster respect for the rights
of PWD “is a good concept.” In (1)(c) it would like to see both “portray”
and “promote,” as “portray” on its own may have a negative connotation.
Sub paragraphs (b) and (c) should be interchanged, so that the article
would move from awareness-raising to positive efforts of countries and
then into combating prejudices.
The Coordinator noted that several delegations have
expressed support for the Australian proposal in (1)(c), and asked the
delegation to read out its proposed language, which Australia read as
“to promote the capabilities and contributions of all PWD as members
of society sharing the same rights and freedoms as all others and in
a manner consistent with the overall purpose of this Convention.“ The
Coordinator highlighted the concerns of several Spanish-speaking delegations
that “portray” does not work in Spanish, which is a problem.
Bangladesh supported the Australian proposal for 5(1)(c)
and suggested inclusion of “and project” after “promote,” which would
be stronger though Bangladesh is flexible. It supports the Canadian
proposed title, and the Bahrain proposal to include training which is
an essential activity in promoting positive attitudes.
The Coordinator thanked delegates for comments on the
title which have been noted, though a decision on whether there should
be titles would be taken later. For now titles would be maintained to
give a general sense of the content of draft articles, but the titles
do not need to be discussed at this stage.
Serbia and Montenegro supported the Australian proposal having
now heard it, perhaps with inclusion of “and responsibilities,” though
it would not insist on this.
Mexico agreed with the need to avoid too much detail
in the article. It supports the Australian proposal for 5(1)(c) which
“solves quite a few problems.” In 5(1)(a) it supports the EU amendment
on respecting rights, but is reticent to include the “various forms”
of disabilities proposed by the Philippines, which may be too detailed.
In 5(1)(b) stereotypes should be included without reference to “negative”
as all stereotypes should be removed. Cultural practices need not be
addressed here as it has been dealt with in Article 4. The Israel proposal
on stigmatization in advertising is perhaps already addressed in 5(2)(c)
which concerns the media.
The Coordinator briefly reviewed each proposal, to
obtain a sense of the room. There had been no substantive objections
to the Australian proposal for 5(1)(c), and so that proposal would go
to the Facilitator’s group. Thailand had expressed a concern of format
rather than substance, and was encouraged to consult directly with Australia
on the matter. The EU proposal to add the concept of fostering respect
for rights in 5(1)(a) was also given to the Facilitator, having met
no opposition. The proposal of Uganda and Israel to include “and their
potential and contribution to society” in 5(1)(a) would not be submitted
as delegations felt the concept was sufficiently captured in 5(1)(c).
The proposal of New Zealand to add “in all areas of life” in 5(1)(c)
received support and no opposition and would be referred to the Facilitator’s
group. The Thai proposal in 5(1)(c) addressing types, severity and complexity
of disabilities was opposed by several delegations and Thailand is encouraged
to consult with those delegations on how to address their concerns.
It would not be submitted to the Facilitator’s group. Bahrain’s proposal
to insert a provision on training in 5(1) received support from a number
of delegations. The Netherlands (EU) questioned however whether this
would be an appropriate placement of a provision on training, and felt
it may also be too proscriptive a proposal. The Coordinator asked Bahrain
to elaborate and clarify its proposal.
Bahrain explained that the proposal stresses training
targeting people that are in contact with, and work with, PWD in various
situations. It feels such training is needed to improve and extend contacts
among PWD. It would submit text in due course.
New Zealand appreciated the suggestion of Bahrain but
felt this was not the right article. It believes similar concepts have
been included in later articles addressing issues of service delivery
where personnel working with PWD will require training. It would have
to verify in which articles the concept is addressed.
The Coordinator asked delegates if they agreed that
it would be useful to include a provision somewhere in the convention
to ensure persons in contact with PWD are properly trained.
Serbia and Montenegro associated itself with the comments
of the EU and New Zealand, and thanked Bahrain for its proposal but
felt it would be better place in Article 17 (Education) where many delegations
have suggested addressing training.
The Coordinator noted that Article 17 addresses training
of PWD rather than training of people working with PWD.
Lebanon supported Bahrain’s proposal, but proposed
its placement instead in 5(2).
New Zealand and Canada highlighted provisions in the
WG draft addressing training, such as Article 17(2)(b), and in particular
FN 59 which addresses raising awareness of teachers, and Article 21(g)
and (h) in particular, on raising awareness of healthcare professionals.
Norway noted these issues were also discussed in relation to Article
Mexico felt the proposal of Bahrain was very important
but should not be addressed in a specific article as Article 5, but
rather in its own article, or a more general article.
Yemen noted Bahrain’s proposal is on training broadly,
not just in one area as in 21(h).
Israel supported Bahrain’s proposal, as well as its
placement in Article 5 as it relates to awareness raising. The language
of Article 21(h) could be used as a basis for a broader article on training
in Article 5, which would then remove the necessity of similar provisions
in specific articles, such as 21(h).
Australia noted the number of provisions referencing
training for family, teachers, healthcare professionals and others.
While there may need to be a special mention of the issue in some clauses,
there should also be a more general provision on training. Australia
is flexible as to placement of such a broader provision.
Jordan associated itself with the comments of Mexico,
Yemen and Israel, and agreed with placement of a proposal on training
in Article 5(2) as a sub paragraph after (d).
The Coordinator summarized that there seemed to be
strong support for the proposal of Bahrain. Other provisions relating
to training have been identified, such as Article 21(h), but these are
more limited in scope than the Bahrain proposal.
Lebanon has suggested this should appear in 5(2) addressing
measures. The Facilitator is requested to draft some language of general
application on this issue in 5(2). This will be without prejudice to
the ultimate placement of this language, but responds to requests for
a more general provision on training. The reservations of some delegations
with regard to placement have been noted.
Returning to other proposals, Costa Rica proposed inclusion
of a provision on promoting awareness of the convention; a concept not
yet included in the WG draft.
The Netherlands (EU) felt promoting awareness of the convention
a good idea, but it belongs in Article 25 on implementation, where the
EU made at this AHC session a similar proposal in based on CRC Article
42. The language for a new 25(4) is “States Parties undertake to make
the principles and provision of the Convention widely known by appropriate
and active means.”
The Coordinator noted the language appeared to address
the concept of the Costa Rican proposal, and asked that delegation to
respond to the issue of placement. Costa Rica stated it wanted people
to know the extent and scope of the convention and are flexible regarding
placement of this concept. The Coordinator suggested the issue be taken
up again during discussions of the implementation articles.
With no further proposals to consider for Article 5(1), discussion moved
to 5(2) and the Coordinator highlighted proposals for delegates to respond
to. One proposal for 5(2)(b) replaced “promoting awareness” with “develop
and maintain programmes on awareness.” Another proposal was for a new
paragraph creating an obligation to promulgate the convention. Most
human rights treaties contain such a provision and the question would
be one of placement and whether it should appear in the implementation
The Netherlands (EU) was of the view that Article 5(2)
provides an unnecessary level of detail, and 5(2)(a) and (b) are already
addressed by 5(1)(a). Article 5(2)(c) should be moved to 5(1) and the
remainder of 5(2) deleted.
The Coordinator noted the existing agreement to delete 5(2)(d) in light
of coverage of the concept working in partnership with PWD in the general
obligations of Article 4.
Australia agreed with the EU proposal to delete 5(2),
as (a) and (b) are adequately covered in 5(1)(a). Article 5(2)(c) addresses
the media and there is an argument to be made that this should be retained
as when the media portrays an image of PWD it should be positive and
Costa Rica supported the EU proposal, though noted
that the concept of “all children from an early age and at all levels
of the education system” is not captured in 5(1) and so should be moved
there if 5(2) is deleted, “otherwise the text may be a bit thin.”
Norway supported the proposal to delete 5(2) and requested
elaboration of the EU’s rationale for retaining 5(2)(c), which it is
note yet convinced should be retained.
Mexico was concerned about the total removal of the
provisions of 5(2) as they identify specific measures to meet the objectives
in 5(1), such as awareness raising campaigns and promoting awareness
in education systems. If 5(2) is deleted it favors retention of 5(2)(b)
and “public awareness campaigns” from (c), which could be moved to 5(1).
Serbia and Montenegro supported the EU proposal in
principle, as well as the concerns raised by Costa Rica and Mexico with
respect to 5(2)(b). Fostering disability awareness in children from
an early age is an important concept to retain, and Serbia and Montenegro
could be flexible as to placement.
Cameroon associated itself with the comments of Costa
Rica and Mexico.
Jamaica felt the EU proposal had quite a lot of merit,
but there are some ideas proposed for deletion could be incorporated
in (1). Jamaica proposes moving to 5(1) those ideas in 5(2) not yet
addressed in 5(1).
Venezuela addressed 5(2)(c) on the role of the media.
The media, and television in particular, plays an important role in
promoting positive attitudes to PWD, and so it is important that this
concept be addressed somewhere. The media should be encouraged to help
and where the media is in the private sector some incentives may need
to be found to accomplish this.
Japan supported the EU proposal to streamline the text,
and the Costa Rican proposal to maintain 5(2)(b) as it relates to awareness
raising in children, perhaps in 5(1).
Syria [intervention not recorded on tape]
Canada [incomplete intervention recorded] “… 5(1).
To be less prescriptive however we would like to see words like “such
as” or “including” public awareness campaigns, or other such ideas.”
Israel sought to balance the EU proposal to streamline
the article with the need not to lose certain provisions in 5(2). 5(2)(a)
should be deleted; (b) placed in 5(1) because of the “tremendous importance”
of awareness raising from an early age; Israel agrees with the importance
of (c) relating to the media; and (d) can now be deleted. That would
then leave the Bahrain proposal related to training.
Yemen associate itself with the views of Mexico and
Costa Rica regarding retention of content of 5(2)(a) and (b). Awareness
raising amongst schoolchildren is an important part of any later awareness
raising campaign, because children are the future of any country. This
provision is extremely important “and certainly it must be kept in.”
Republic of Korea supported the EU proposal to streamline
the text, but also believes some of the ideas need to be moved to 5(1)
especially, as Yemen explained, 5(2)(b).
The Coordinator summarized proposals to guide the Facilitator’s
group. There was wide level of support for the EU proposal to streamline
Article 5, particularly with regard to removing duplication of items
in (2) already covered in (1). The EU proposed retention of 5(2)(c)
which was questioned by one delegation but no one opposed it. 5(2)(c)
was otherwise strongly supported by others. It is also clear that many
wish to ensure that some of the elements contained in 5(2) which are
not already found 5(1) should be moved to (1), in particular the concepts
of public awareness campaign from 2(a); and promoting awareness including
children from an early age and at all levels of the education system
from 2(b). Canada proposed use of phrases “such as” or “including,”
to denote that these examples are not exclusive but are for illustration
Lebanon stressed the importance of the WG text for
Article 5, which clearly denotes in 5(1) what must be done, and in 5(2)
how it must be done. It questions the validity of an exercise to move
elements of 5(2) into (1). The Coordinator responded that although he
largely agreed with Lebanon’s description of the current structure of
the artice there was a clear view within the room to combine the proposals.
New Zealand felt reference to maintenance of a public
awareness campaign in 5(2)(a) is too prescriptive, as there are many
ways to raise awareness and this is drafted as an obligation not an
option. It would thus prefer the first part of 2(a) to be removed, and
as the remained would repeat (1)(a) it could also be deleted. It agreed
with Costa Rica on the need to emphasize early education and importance
of the media. These concepts could be maintainted in 5(2) or moved to
The Netherlands (EU) fully agreed with the Coordinator’s
summary, though questioned how the issue of overall placement of Article
5 would be addressed. The Coordinator responded that proposals on placement
have focused on reordering, with the proposed order of articles being
4, 7, and then 5. Structure would of course have to be examined overall
at the end of negotiations.
Thailand supported the statement of Lebanon “which
made logical sense.” It is flexible as to the wording of each sub paragraph.
Syria supported the Lebanese intervention, and trusted
the Coordinator and Facilitator could merge proposals from 5(2) appropriately.
Australia supported the comments of New Zealand, and
stressed that if it were desirable to maintain 5(2), the use of “shall”
with regard to public awareness campaign would not be acceptable.
The Coordinator noted the proposal to retain separation
of 5(1) and (2) because they address different concepts, but there is
a strong view in support of combining those paragraphs without losing
the essential elements of those provisions. Asking the Facilitator to
ensure that no substance is lost from (2), should address the substantive
concerns voiced. Regarding the use of “shall” and the provision on public
awareness campaigns being unduly prescriptive, New Zealand and Australia
are asked to draft alternative language that would maintain the overall
concept of 5(2)(b).
Volume 5, #8
September 01, 2004
AFTERNOON SESSION: INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS
PROMOTION OF POSITIVE ATTITUDES - INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS
Australia outlined the 3 messages emerging from this article:
1. raising awareness in all aspects of society about disability and
PWD, their rights, potential and contributions to society; 2. to promote
the capabilities and contributions of PWD and reinforce their positions
as equal members of society; 3. to combat negative stereotypes or negative
practices and prejudices. It is possible within these 3 elements to
construct an article that would pick up all the desired elements in
current Article 5.
The EU enquired whether the Facilitator was opening
the floor to comments on all of 5(1) or wanted to limit comments to
5(1)(a). The Facilitator indicated that the discussion could begin with
the chapeau and proceed from there. For the consideration of the group
he suggested the following language for the chapeau: “States parties
undertake to adopt appropriate and effective measures to”
Cameroon (on behalf of the African Group) supported
the Facilitator’s suggestion emphasizing that the African Group would
like to maintain “appropriate” rather than “immediate.” The flexibility
of this term gives developing countries the leeway to implement measures
that require funding and resources based on prevailing conditions and
on their ability to do so.
The EU favored the original WG language calling for “immediate” measures.
The concept and meaning of “appropriate” is already covered under the
China sought clarification as to the status of 5(2),
whether it would be merged with 5(1). If the Article confines itself
to 5(1) only then China is comfortable with the original language. If
the paragraphs are to be merged, then China would support the facilitator’s
suggestion for the chapeau, and seeks the views of other delegations.
In response to 2 further comments on the question of merging 5(1) and
(2), from Indonesia and Cameroon, the Facilitator asked
that the group first clarify the content of 5(1), ie the “What” rather
than the “How.” At this stage of the discussion, he asked that the group
focus on the chapeau, specifically for the Committee’s input on retaining
the term “immediate” and/or whether both “immediate” and “appropriate”
could be included.
Mexico acknowledged that measures cannot always be
“immediate” as states need resources, but noted that language here ought
to be consistent with other conventions. It is important that PWD are
ensured the same level of commitment from States. It preferred retaining
the term “immediate” and asked for further explanation from delegations
calling for its replacement.
Kenya lent its support to the African Group, emphasising
that the word “appropriate” is preferred because this implies “correct
measures in the circumstances.” Such circumstances would account for
“resource and time factors.” “Appropriate“ includes, but is wider than,
“immediate” and “does not lock out programs and activities that may
not be that immediate for delegations worried about the implications”
of this term.
Mexico stressed that while “appropriate” does encompass
the notion of “effective,” the term “immediate” should be included reflecting
the standard set in other instruments.
Cameroon noted that many international agreements in
force invite states parties to take progressive measures. A measure
cannot be appropriate if it is not taken in a timely fashion.
The Facilitator suggested a compromise proposal to
include both “immediate” and “appropriate,” or to use “as soon as possible”
instead of “immediate.”
The EU supported the Facilitator’s first suggestion
but not the second because “as soon as possible” was a vague obligation.
It should also be taken into account that the chapeau obligates states
“to undertake to adopt” rather than “to adopt” the immediate measures.
Australia, Cameroon (on behalf of the African Group), Mexico
and Serbia-Montenegro also supported the compromise proposal
for the chapeau as suggested by the Facilitator, which he read out as
follows: “States Parties undertake to adopt immediate, appropriate and
effective measures to:” noting that “effective” applies to the previous
two terms. The EU specifically and the Committee generally agreed to
this language, which was adopted.
The Facilitator introduced formulations for 5(1)(a)
incorporating proposals made so far, but leaving out the notion of “needs,”
which had not garnered much support: “Actively raise awareness throughout
society regarding PWD and cultivate / promote a culture of respect for
their rights, dignity, potential and contributions to society.” He opened
the floor for comment.
Philippines reiterated its proposal to insert language highlighting
the different forms of disabilities. This is an integral part of raising
awareness about disability. While the public may be aware of disability
generally they are not aware of its various forms, especially those
that are not visible, such as psycho-social disabilities.
Australia questioned the use of “actively” at the beginning
of the Facilitator’s proposed language, given that this was substantively
already included in the chapeau in the context of “effective and immediate.”
It also preferred “foster” over “promote.” Australia otherwise supported
the Facilitator’s proposed formulation.
EU supported the comments of Australia and Philippines.
The Facilitator’s language should refer to both “disability and PWD.”
The meaning of “culture of respect” is unclear, so the EU reiterates
its position from yesterday, supported by a number of delegations, to
refer instead to fostering the rights of PWD. The concepts of “potential
and contribution” are already incorporated in 5(1)(c), and the reference
to dignity should be deleted in this context.
Canada supported the EU’s comments. It is not advisable
to use “actively” as this group should be cautious about introducing
new concepts and terminology. The focus should be on using language
that is already on the table. The reference to a “culture of respect”
could be interpreted as diluting this obligation towards PWD and should
be replaced with “fostering respect” for PWD. For the sake of brevity,
the adjectives “potential.. etc” are more appropriate in (c).
Cameroon (on behalf of the African Group) suggested
removing the word “actively” at the beginning and retaining the reference
to “various forms” of disability. In addition the reference to “needs”
should be incorporated.
Norway suggested removing the word “actively” and retaining
the EU’s preferred references to both “disability and PWD.” The Philippines
proposal to include “various forms” creates the possibly complicating
precedent that this descriptor will need to be incorporated wherever
disability is mentioned in the Convention text. Alternative overarching
language could note that references to “disability” anywhere in the
Convention text refers to “various forms of disabilities.” Language
on “potential … etc” is already covered in 1(c) and is redundant here.
Adding “dignity” in the context of this sentence is unclear. Reference
to a “culture of respect” is unclear and should be removed unless an
explanation is presented otherwise.
Serbia-Montenegro supported comments of the EU, Norway,
Australia and Canada.
Mexico supported the WG proposed text for this Article
and called for retaining references to both “disability and PWD.” The
Philippines proposal takes away from the essential aspect of the disability.
References to its “various forms” reflects a medical model perspective.
The Ugandan proposal is redundant and already covered in 1(c). References
to a “culture of respect” should be retained as it implies an educational
imperative at a societal level and that will apply across generations.
Dignity is an important concept but not necessary for this paragraph.
Costa Rica agreed that adding “actively” might complicate
the text and is redundant. It is sufficient to refer to respecting the
rights of PWD instead of “a culture of respect.” The Ugandan language
on the “potential and contribution” of PWD is already dealt with in
(c). Costa Rica withdraws its own proposed additions to (a).
Cuba proposed replacing “culture of respect” with the
more direct language obligating states “to respect the rights and dignity
of PWD.” The Ugandan proposal should be addressed in (c), and rather
than referring to the “image” of PWD, should provide examples of PWD
potential and contribution. While Cuba understands the Mexican objections
of undue attention to a medical perspective, it supports the Philippines
Bahrain finds the WG text “clear cut and comprehensive”
and the Facilitator’s additional language on the rights and dignity
of PWD unnecessary.
New Zealand highlighted the considerable progress that
was made at yesterday’s meeting, and noted that many of those suggestions
have been made again today. It recalled the Coordinator’s summing up
of yesterday’s discussion on 5(1)(a) – there was widespread agreement
the text to be considered for this informal session should be as close
as possible to the WG original text with the following addition at the
end of the sentence: “and to foster respect for their rights.” New Zealand
called on the group to pick up the discussion from where it left off,
which is to fine-tune and if possible seek consensus on the text that
was largely agreed upon yesterday.
The Facilitator was of the view that the WG text was
not a single composite text, but had brackets, which should now be resolved.
He suggested removing “Actively” from the beginning given the consensus
on this point, and suggested that reference to both “disability and
PWD” might address the Philippines concerns that the “various forms”
of disability be also considered.
Philippines reiterated its proposal noting that highlighting
the various forms of disability is a critical part of the raising awareness
issue. Text that simply refers to raising awareness of disability is
not as meaningful.
The Facilitator noted that some delegations do not
subscribe to this proposed language, and to language that emphasizes
differences between disabilities. He highlighted that raising awareness
of the idea of “disability” itself would by definition include and connote
its various forms.
EU pointed out that the text of the Disability Caucus
itself does not refer to the “various forms” of disability. For this
reason and that provided by Mexico this new language should not be incorporated.
Thailand noted with great understanding the Philippines
concerns given the reality that people with certain types of disability,
especially when they are not visible, are overlooked. Nevertheless it
subscribes to the principle of the social model of disability and agrees
to the WG text with the addition as outlined by NZ.
Canada highlighted the need to consider the text that
emerged from the discussions yesterday, where a consensus was emerging
in the direction of excluding the Philippines additional language, which
does not appear anywhere else in the Convention. While it was sympathetic
to Thailand’s explanation Canada too opposes the inclusion of this language.
Korea opposed the Philippines text on the grounds that
it could in fact be limiting because it restricted the specification
of disability to typology only. There are other ways in which disability
could be identified and described. It should be noted that raising awareness
is not only about “rights,” and in order to ensure the applicability
of this obligation well into the future and in the interests of keeping
the article streamlined, the additional references here should be left
The Facilitator called on the Philippines to reconsider
its proposed addition. If the Philippines could not withdraw its language,
it could be indicated in a footnote. The Facilitator noted that resorting
to footnotes at this point would not be advisable, in particular for
this Article, which did not, in its original form, come with footnotes.
Trinidad and Tobago noted that raising awareness takes
place on two levels, disability and PWD, and specifying both should
address the Philippines’ concerns.
New Zealand again recalled the agreement that was reached
yesterday, when the Coordinator asked delegations for the text that
should be considered today at smaller informals. It was agreed that
the text for today’s discussion should be in keeping with the original
WG text with an additional phrase at the end. New Zealand highlighted
the advice of the Chair and the Coordinator calling on delegations to
exercise flexibility and make compromises. If delegations go back to
their own original proposals at this stage of the process, after Article
5 has been discussed in the First Reading, a Plenary last week, and
an informal yesterday, very little progress will be made.
The Facilitator again appealed to the Philippines to
reconsider its proposal keeping in mind that these concerns could be
addressed elsewhere in the Convention text and the need to avoid adding
a footnote in an Article that previously did not have any footnotes.
Mexico suggested that in order to move forward and
given the lack of time the word “disability” could be footnoted incorporating
the Philippines proposed text.
The Facilitator concluded the informals with the text
that has been agreed upon so far – the chapeau and 1(a) with a footnote
after “disability” incorporating the Philippines proposal.