January 23, 2015
BBI joined the Inclusive Sports Initiative at the Institute for Human Centered Design and Inclusion4development in commenting on the draft UNESCO Revised International Charter of Physical Education and Sport.
BBI’s Janet Lord, who directs human rights and inclusive development programming at BBI, commented: “Our work to ensure that international instruments take full account of persons with disabilities and imparts a rights-based perspective on disability issues is clearly not done. Although the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was adopted in 2006 and is reaching universal application, we still have numerous instances of international instruments failing to take its principles into account.”
Her work with Eli Wolff and Amy Farkas, both of whom are outstanding advocates for disability inclusion in physical education and sport, was designed to ensure that persons with disabilities have their interests reflected in the UNESCO document. She explained: “Unfortunately the draft Review Charter reflected an outmoded understanding of disability and did not at all acknowledge that persons with disabilities are among the most marginalized when it comes to physical education and sport. That is not acceptable and we must ensure that persons with disabilities are not rendered invisible in these policy documents that shape national level law, policy and practice.”
The commentary drafted by Wolff, Farkas and Lord provided: (1) the basis for the analysis, namely, the commitment of the United Nations to adhere to the principles set out in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD); (2) background on Article 30(5) of the CRPD, the most detailed legally binding provision on the right to participate in sport, recreation and play in any international legal instrument; (3) a summary of suggested revisions to the draft UNESCO Charter; and (5) a side-by-side legal analysis and accompanying proposed amendments to the Preliminary Draft Charter.