Advancement of the UN CRPD through the 2030 Agenda No-one Left Behind: Towards Implementation in Latin Americ

Greetings from São Paulo where the International Disability Alliance (IDA), in partnership with the United Nations Partnership to Promote the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNPRPD), the São Paulo State Secretariat for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and UNICEF held a three-­day regional multi­stakeholder conference to discuss the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD) in Latin America.

This is an exciting moment in our history. It is just a month since the world’s leaders adopted Agenda 2030 and we are also approaching the 10-year anniversary of the adoption of the UN CRPD. By leveraging these two processes, we, persons with disabilities, can help ensure that the next 15 years are the most transformative for the rights and inclusion of all  persons  with  disabilities,   everywhere.  This   conference   is  supporting the development of this transformation in Latin America, and is part of a global conversation on the realisation of an inclusive 2030 Agenda for all.

The conference presented an opportunity to share experiences, perspectives and ideas of over 150 participants from across national, regional and global actors, including organisations of persons with disabilities (DPOs), state representatives, UN agencies, international disability and development organizations and donors and wider members of civil society.

Alongside the conference, a youth and self-advocacy workshop, “New Voices, New Challenges” hosted by the Instituto Interamericano sobre Discapacidad y Desarrollo Inclusivo (iiDi) and UNICEF, and the first regional meeting and workshop “Change and Exchange” of the Indigenous Persons with Disabilities Global Network-Latin America Region were held to support and further engage the voices of youth and indigenous persons with disabilities, and self-advocates and their families in the conference discussion.

Among the opening speakers were Dr. Linamara Rizzo BattistellaSão Paulo State Secretary for the Right of Persons with Disabilities; Maryanne Diamond, IDA’s Chair; Rosangela Bermen Bieler, Chief, UNICEF Disability Unit; and Ana Lucia Arellano, Chair of IDA’s Regional Member for Latin America, RIADIS. There were also video messages from Catalina Devandas, the UN Special Rapporteur for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and Maria Soledad Cisternas Reyes, Chair of the CRPD Committee. There have been panel discussions on the implementation of the CRPD in Latin America; an overview of the 2030 Agenda and the rights of persons with disabilities; global indicators, data, statistics and partnerships; and the role of coordination mechanisms and stakeholders. There have also been workshops to discuss the development of the rights of persons with disabilities in seven thematic areas: women and girls; children and youth; indigenous persons; disaster risk reduction, employment and social protection, inclusive education, and living independently and being included in the community.
In her message, Catalina Devandas emphasized that, since the adoption of the CRPD, there is a growing recognition of the rights of persons with disabilities and greater engagement by governments to address the rights of persons with disabilities in a systematic manner. The challenge now is how to translate this into concrete change in the quality of life of persons with disabilities. All those involved should agree on a coordinated agenda for the implementation of both the CRPD and the 2030 Agenda – which should reinforce each other.
Maria Soledad Cisternas Reyes stressed that accountability mechanisms of Agenda 2030 should be guided by the concluding observations of UN Treaty Bodies, including the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which offer guidelines and identify priorities for implementation.
Updated conference information and documents available online here: and you can follow the conference social media using the tag: #CDPD2030LAC