International relationships

You can read about New Zealand's participation with the United Nations, other countries and people in promoting and sharing about the Convention.

United Nations

2nd Conference of States Parties

In September 2009, the 2nd Conference of States Parties to the Convention was held at the United Nations in New York. The theme of this Conference was "legislative measures to implement the Convention."

New Zealand was represented at the Conference by Jan Scown (Director, Office for Disability Issues); and Gary Williams (Chief Executive, DPA), along with Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade officials based at the New Zealand Mission to the United Nations in New York. 

As Vice President of the Conference Bureau, New Zealand was asked to host associated events, and continue our leadership role with the Convention to date.

United Nations Human Rights Council

In 2008, New Zealand responded to the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights asking States to contribute to their thematic study on key legal measures for ratification and effective implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This issue was discussed at the United Nations Human Rights Council meeting in March 2009, and is the start of an ongoing annual interactive discussion focused on the rights of disabled people.

At the 2009 meeting, States were requested to report on measures being taken to implement the Convention's article 33 on national implementation and monitoring.

International guests

Professor Ron McCallum, Australia (Chair, UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities)

On 20 May 2010, the Minister for Disability Issues, Hon Tariana Turia, hosted a breakfast with Professor Ron McCallum and other Ministers, government chief executives and other senior officials, Human Rights Commissioners and Ombudsmen. Professor McCallum is chair of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. On 21 May 2010, the Office hosted a meeting between Professor McCallum and some government officials to discuss reporting against the Convention.

Professor Gerard Quinn, Centre for Disability Law & Policy, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland

On 19 and 20 February 2009, Professor Gerard Quinn visited New Zealand to talk with disabled people's organisations (in Wellington and Auckland) and government officials about key actions to implement the Convention. In particular, Professor Quinn talked about frameworks to promote, protect and monitor the Convention. His visited was organised by the Human Rights Commission and funded by the Asia Pacific Forum of Human Rights Institutions. The Office organised a meeting with government agencies involved with human rights treaties to meet and talk with Professor Quinn.

Professor Marcia Rioux, York University, Canada

On 15 December 2008, we held a workshop in Wellington with disabled people's organisations and others to talk about the Disability Rights Promotion International project. Professor Marcia Rioux, project co-director, talked about how the project involved disabled people's organisations to monitor the rights of disabled people. This workshop will inform the government's thinking on the framework.