Regarding Rights

Academic and activist perspectives on human rights


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Political Participation: Where are Women with Disabilities?

Image from Wheels for Humanity Indonesia http://ucpruk.org

Image from Wheels for Humanity Indonesia
http://ucpruk.org

By Jane Connors

We celebrated 70 years of the United Nations (UN) on 24 October, with landmarks all over the world, including Uluru, controversially, turning UN blue in commemoration.

The few human rights provisions of the UN Charter form the basis of international legal standards, established in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and institutions for the promotion and protection of the human rights of women. In 1952, the UN adopted the Convention on the Political Rights of Women. It adopted the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, obliging States parties to eliminate discrimination against women in all fields, including public and political life, in 1979. Negotiation of these instruments was contentious: States expressed reservations on many provisions on adoption, which they confirmed on ratification or accession. Continue Reading →


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Reflections on the General Assembly’s Recent Resolution on Human Rights Treaty Body Reform

By Fiona McGaughey,

University of Western Australia

High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

After more than 30 years of discussions and reports on the human rights treaty system, the latest statement from the UN General Assembly is contained in its resolution on reform passed on 9 April. ‘Strengthening and Enhancing the Effective Functioning of the Human Rights Treaty Body System’ includes measures that should improve the efficiency of the system, but it is not self-evident that these measures will improve its effectiveness. Ultimately, the effectiveness of human rights treaties can only be improved by better promotion and protection of human rights for the people who seek to exercise them, and this broader aim of human rights treaties has not been adequately addressed by the UN.

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