What is the UN CRPD?

March 11 2017, 02:02pm

What is the UN CRPD?

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, UN CRPD, is a human rights convention written by and for people with disabilities.

The UN CRPD was written by states, with the constant involvement and input of people with disabilities. The UN CRPD sets a standard, that people with disabilities are entitled to all the human rights that people without disabilities enjoy.

This includes the right to:

  • choose where you live,
  • work and access education,
  • be involved in sport and culture on an equal basis,
  • choose your own supports, to make your own decisions,
  • be given information in a form you can understand,
  • be free from violence and harassment.


The UN CRPD does not create any new human rights. Instead, it states that all existing human rights apply equally to people with disabilities. States must take all necessary actions to ensure that people with disabilities are able to enjoy and exercise the full range of human rights.

To achieve this, state parties are required to:

  • change their laws and policies,
  • engage in awareness raising,
  • fight prejudice and negative attitudes in society,
  • further remove barriers faced by people with disabilities.


The ultimate goal of the UN CRPD is to set out the rights of people with disabilities, and provide a path to achieving those rights. By becoming a party to the UN CRPD, a state affirms these rights. It also  commits to working towards achieving these rights within its laws, policies, and culture.


Links to the UNCRPD in Different Formats, and other useful links

Official Version Online - https://www.un.org/development/desa/disabilities/convention-on-the-rights-of-persons-with-disabilities/convention-on-the-rights-of-persons-with-disabilities-2.html

Official Version in Accessible PDF - https://www.un.org/development/desa/disabilities/convention-on-the-rights-of-persons-with-disabilities.html#accessible_pdf

Plain English UNCRPD - http://www.equalityni.org/ECNI/media/ECNI/Publications/Delivering%20Equality/UNCRPDOptionalProtocolPlainlanguage.pdf

Easy to Read UNCRPD - https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/345108/easy-read-un-convention.pdf

UNICEF: The UNCRPD explained for children (link includes PDF and audio versions) - https://www.unicef.org/adolescence/index_43893.html

Handbook for Parliamentarians on the UNCRPD - http://www.ipu.org/PDF/publications/disabilities-e.pdf


Check out these two cartoons. The first tells us five facts about the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Ireland (UN CRPD), and the second tells us five ways the UN CRPD could help you.