Press Release

Minister of State Devins opens NDA disability seminar on UN Convention and Council of Europe Disability Action Plan

The Minister of State with responsibility for Disability and Mental Health, Dr. Jimmy Devins T.D., today (3rd October, 2007) opened the National Disability Authority’s seminar on the UN Convention and the Council of Europe’s Disability Action Plan.

“I am delighted to be here today to open the NDA’s information seminar on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Council of Europe Disability Action Plan”, the Minister said. “The UN Convention is a key human rights treaty and represents an important step forward for people with disabilities both in Ireland and throughout the world. This information seminar is a timely and effective way of raising awareness of the Convention and the Council of Europe Disability Action Plan”.

Ireland was one of the first countries to sign the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities when it opened for signature on 30 March 2007. Since then, the Government has established an implementation group to advise on any changes to the Government’s National Disability Strategy that may be required to enable Ireland to ratify the Convention.

The Council of Europe Disability Action Plan was launched in September 2006. The purpose of the Disability Action Plan is to support the development of strategies to bring about full participation of people with disabilities in society. Both the UN and the Council of Europe are putting arrangements in place to monitor compliance.

Minister Devins commended the NDA’s awareness-raising initiative. “I would like to take this opportunity to thank the NDA for organising today’s information seminar. The UN Convention and the Council of Europe Disability Action Plan provide for consultation during the implementation process with people with disabilities through their representative organisations. Today’s event is an important part of that process” he said.