21 Int'l J. Child. Rts. 464 (2013)
Children with Disabilities: A Critical Appraisal

handle is hein.journals/intjchrb21 and id is 476 raw text is: Jocnor
MARTINUS
NIJHOFF
PUB LI S HE R s  InternationalJournal of Children's Rights 21(2013) 464-487  brillcom/chil
Children with Disabilities: A Critical Appraisal
Maya Sabatello
Center for Global Affairs, NYU, USA
msabatello@nyu.edu
Abstract
This essay contemplates the rights of children with disabilities under international law. It anal-
yses the philosophical and practical reasons for the failure of the Convention on the Rights of
the Child to protect the rights of children with disabilities, and looks at the remedial measures
adopted under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). The argu-
ment advanced is that, especially when children's perspectives are considered, assistive tech-
nologies are at the heart of national and international efforts to advance the rights of children
with disabilities, most importantly, a right to inclusion. I consider the challenges ahead and
draw conclusions on the future of the rights of children with disabilities.
Keywords
children with disabilities; Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; inclusion;
right to play, recreation and sport; assistive technologies
The rights of children with disabilities have long been neglected in interna-
tional human rights law. Certainly, the adoption of the Convention on the
Rights of the Child in 1989 was intended to be a turning point. The CRC is a
milestone instrument to advance children's rights and it explicitly includes
children with disabilities within its scope. In practice, very little attention has
been given to the rights of children with disabilities. Studies show that dis-
crimination against children with disabilities is rampant in all societal settings,
that children with disabilities are consistently excluded from participation in
social, cultural and other events, and that also in comparison to their non-
disabled peers, their voice is all too often silenced.
The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), adopted
by the United Nations General Assembly in 20o6, strove to remedy this neglect.
The CRPD's expressed purpose is 'to promote, protect and ensure
the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms
by all persons with disabilities, and to promote respect for their inherent
dignity' (Article i). Following much advocacy work of persons with disabilities
and their representative organisations, it also includes an array of provisions
needed to implement this goal with respect to children with disabilities.

(15 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2ns:4

DOI 10.1163/15718182-02102007

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