Human Rights


An exposure document on the violation of disabled people's human rights and the solutions recommended within the UN Standard Rules.

"All Human Beings are born free and equal in Dignity and Rights."


The purpose of this document is:

•    to raise awareness of the conditions in which the majority of over 500 million disabled people live in the world today.

•    to show that disability is a visible, human rights issue

•    to influence all those in a position to implement social change to take action.

Disabled people are human beings and have the right to equality of treatment.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) is the cornerstone of international human rights law. It is not legally binding but is a list of principles which should not be broken by any nation calling itself civilised.

Subsequently, the UN drew up two separate International Covenants elaborating on the principle of the Universal Declaration. The Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights are both legally binding on those states who have signed them.

A violation occurs when a human right is breached or not implemented.

Discrimination is defined as: any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference which is based on grounds, such as race, colour, sex ... or any other status and has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the exercise by all persons, on an equal footing, of all rights and freedoms.

All the individual cases documented here are just examples - there is evidence of hundreds and thousands of other cases of similar violations.

In this booklet, we document violations alongside the relevant section of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and then give a solution from the the UN Standard Rules on the Equalisation of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities.

There is also evidence of thousands of examples of good practice demonstrating that these violations need not take place. Through the influence of disabled people's organisations everywhere, these examples of good practice have been put in place by governments, policy and programme-makers and statutory authorities, proving that disabled people can be fully participating and equal citizens in their own communities.

All cases of violations in this document have been verified and are documented either in court records, the press or in research evidence published since 1990. In order to protect disabled individuals and ensure confidentiality, only the country in which the violations took place, are given.

Throughout this report, references to 'disabled people' include people with sensory, intellectual and physical impairments and people with mental health difficulties.

To read the full text of Are Disabled People Included? click on one of the links below.

Are Disabled People Included? WORD

Are Disabled People Included? RTF

Are Disabled People Included? PDF