[JURIST] The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities [official website; text] entered into force Saturday, one month after Ecuador became the 20th country to ratify the treaty [JURIST report]. The landmark UN disability rights treaty [JURIST news archive] protects the 650 million persons living with disabilities worldwide [UN fact sheet] and holds that all disabled people should be treated as full-fledged citizens and completely integrated into society. It has been signed by 127 countries and ratified by 25, albeit not the US [JURIST report], which insists that US domestic measures on the federal, state and local levels are already adequate for the purpose. The treaty opened for signature [JURIST report] last March.
The treaty also includes an Optional Protocol [Protocol text], which grants individuals the right to petition a committee of experts for violations of the Convention after all national procedures have been exhausted. The UN News Centre has more.