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UN Programme on Disability   Working for full participation and equality

Draft Article 14
RESPECT FOR PRIVACY, THE HOME AND THE FAMILY

  • Persons with disabilities, including those living in institutions, shall not be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with their privacy, and shall have the right to the protection of the law against such interference. States Parties to this Convention shall take effective measures to protect the privacy of the home, family, correspondence45 and medical records of persons with disabilities and their choice to take decisions on personal matters.
  • States Parties to this Convention shall take effective and appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against persons with disabilities in all matters relating to marriage and family relations,46 and in particular shall ensure:
    • that persons with disabilities are not denied the equal opportunity to experience their sexuality, have sexual and other intimate relationships, and experience parenthood;
    • the right of all men and women with disabilities who are of marriageable age to marry on the basis of free and full consent of the intending spouses, and to found a family;
    • the rights of persons with disabilities to decide freely and responsibly on the number and spacing of their children 47 on an equal basis with other persons48 and to have access to information, reproductive and family planning education, and the means necessary to enable them to exercise these rights;
    • the rights of persons with disabilities with regard to guardianship, wardship, trusteeship and adoption of children, or similar institutions where these concepts exist in national legislation. For the purpose of guaranteeing these rights, States Parties shall render appropriate assistance to disabled parents in the performance of their child-rearing responsibilities;49
    • that a child shall not be separated from his or her parents against their will, except when competent authorities subject to judicial review determine, in accordance with applicable law and procedures, that such separation is necessary for the best interests of the child. The child shall not however be separated from parents with disabilities on the basis either directly or indirectly of their disability;50
    • the promotion of awareness and the provision of information aimed at changing negative perceptions and social prejudices towards sexuality, marriage and parenthood of persons with disabilities.


Footnotes:

45: The Ad Hoc Committee may wish to consider whether the word "correspondence" should be replaced with the broader term "communications".

46: The Ad Hoc Committee may wish to consider whether the phrase "marriage and family relations" might be too limiting.

47: Members of the Working Group agreed that a prohibition on the sterilisation of persons with disabilities was implicit in the right to decide on the number and spacing of their children, but some members considered that this issue was of such importance that the Ad Hoc Committee should consider making the prohibition explicit.

48: The understanding of the Working Group is that this draft Article does not deal with the national policies of States Parties on the size of families but simply stipulates that persons with disabilities should not be treated differently from the general population in this respect. The Ad Hoc Committee may therefore wish to consider whether the phrase "on an equal basis with other persons" is necessary in this paragraph.

49: The Ad Hoc Committee may wish to consider the wording of the second sentence of this sub-paragraph in the light of concerns expressed by some delegations that States Parties might find it difficult to guarantee the resources to "render appropriate assistance".

50: The Ad Hoc Committee may wish to consider other formulations for the second sentence of this sub-paragraph, including the deletion of the words "either directly or indirectly" or their replacement by the word "solely", or the substitution of a positive formulation for the sentence, such as: "States Parties shall render appropriate assistance to parents with disabilities to enable their children to live with them".


Relevant references:

International human rights conventions and legal instruments

Disability-specific instruments

Jurisprudence of human rights treaty bodies

Other documents

Discussions at the Working Group

Comments on the draft text

Back to list of Draft Articles


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United Nations, 2003-04
Department of Economic and Social Affairs
Division for Social Policy and Development