Today at the International Bar Association (IBA) Conference in Sydney, Bingham Centre Associate Senior Research Fellow, Julinda Beqiraj presents the findings of a new co-authored report looking at access to justice for people with disabilities.
The report "Access to justice for persons with disabilities: From international principles to practice" has been commissioned by the IBA Access to Justice and Legal Aid Committee and was researched and written by the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law. It draws on the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, human rights law and the UN Sustainable Development Goals to analyse the challenges in accessing justice around the world for people with disabilities and identify how the legal community can best use their position, skills and expertise to overcome the barriers that still exist.
The report concludes that lawyers, the wider legal community and governments could and should do more to help protect the rights of people with disabilities. Around one billion people - 15 percent of the global population - have some form of disability and experience discrimination in many areas of life, exacerbated by the barriers they face in accessing justice. Encouraging better reporting of crimes against people with disabilities, advocating against discriminatory laws and incorporating specialist training within legal education are a few of the actions the report calls on lawyers - and ultimately governments - to take to help combat this inequality.