Strategic Litigation to Forward the Implementation of the CRPD Through Regional Human Rights Mechanisms

November 13, 2009

American University Washington College of Law

4801 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Room 603

Washington, DC  20016

Agenda (PDF) | Accessible Text Agenda (Word)

On November 13, 2009, the Center, in partnership with the Open Society Institute (OSI) (since renamed the Open Society Foundations) and Mental Disability Rights International (MDRI) (since renamed Disability Rights International), hosted a high-level, invitation-only meeting of over 30 activists from around the world to discuss strategic litigation in pursuit of disability rights. The conference focused on the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the ways that regional litigation may support and enhance its development. Participants included representatives from Europe, Africa, Latin America and North America.

Among the presenters at the event were Professor Dinah Shelton, Professor of International Law at GWU Law School, Professor Robert Goldman, Professor of Law and Co-Director of the Center for Human Rights & Humanitarian Law at WCL, Allison Hillman, former Director of the Americas Programs at MDRI and currently the Program Officer of the Disability Rights Initiative at the Open Society Foundations (OSF), Camilla Parker, Legal and Policy Consultant at OSF, Clarence Sundram, Special Master at US District Court and Special Advisor to the Governor on Vulnerable Persons at New York Executive Chamber, Oliver Lewis, Executive Director of the Mental Disability Advocacy Center (MDAC), Michael Bach, Executive Vice-President of the Canadian Association for Community Living, Robert Kushen, former Executive Director of the European Roma Rights Centre, and Hadar Harrisr, Executive Director of the Center for Human Rights & Humanitarian Law at WCL.

Meeting Agenda:

9:00 - 9:15 am: Coffee/Breakfast

9:15 - 9:45 am: Welcome and Opening Remarks

9:45 - 10:15 am: Background Presentation: Regional Human Rights Litigation and its Implications for the CRPD, A Comparison of the European and Inter-American Human Rights Systems

10:30 am - 12:00pm: Workshop 1: Strategies to Advance the Interpretation and Implementation of the Right to Community Integration (CRPD, Artilcle 19)

12:00 - 1:15 pm: Lunch

1:15 - 3:00 pm: Workshop 2: Strategies to Implement the Right to Equal Recognition Before the Law (CRPD, Article 12)

3:15 - 5:00 pm: Moving Forward: Opportunities and Pitfalls

Materials Made Available at 2009 Meeting:

  • United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Optional Protocol (English PDF)
  • Convención sobre los Derechos de las Personas con Discapacidad y su Protocolo Facultativo de las Naciones Unidas (Spanish PDF)


Co-sponsored by the American University Washington College of Law Center for Human Rights & Humanitarian Law, Open Society Institute (OSI), and Mental Disability Rights International (MDRI)

mdri Mental Disability Rights International Open Society Foundations