Catalina Devandas Aguilar is an independent expert appointed by the United Nations. As Special Rapporteur, she works with the international community to realize the rights of persons with disabilities and promote their inclusion in development. Catalina works with governments and global institutions to make sure that their initiatives and efforts reach persons with disabilities themselves. Her vision is that disability is a part of human diversity.

Priority Areas

Annual reports

Universal legal capacity, to ensure equal recognition of persons with disabilities before the law

2018-02-20

Around the world, experiences of peer support, advanced directives, advocacy and other support measures are showing the way to fulfil the right of persons with disabilities to full legal capacity and equality before the law. The notion of universal legal capacity advanced in this report calls for societies in which every person—with or without disabilities—has the same rights, and is therefore equal before the law.

Sexual and reproductive health and rights of girls and young women with disabilities

2017-08-28

Around the world, young women and girls with disabilities face great restrictions to access to services and education that are essential for leading healthy lives and minimize risks of gender-based violence. Protecting their right to decide over their own bodies and sexuality is critical in the global fight to end violence, exploitation and abuse against women.

Support services for persons with disabilities

2017-02-03

For most persons with disabilities, support services are necessary preconditions to live and fully participate in the community, with choices equal to others. In this report, the Special Rapporteur elaborates on the need for their inclusion in national policies and legislation, and provides guidelines for their implementation.

Country visits

2017-12-15

Kazakhstan

Steps to reform Kazakhstan’s social protection system and provide universal health coverage are a clear indication of the country's committment to the rights of persons with disabilities. But more efforts are required to include them in society, particularly in the areas of education and political participation. Legal capacity laws need to be reformed, and the country must move towards ending institutionalization and involuntary treatment.

2017-11-20

France

France is a country with a strong tradition of republican and democratic values, resting on the ideals of ‘freedom, equality and fraternity’. Disability policies in France need to embrace these ideals to guarantee the full inclusion of all people with disabilities.

2017-05-29

Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)

The Governmnet of the DPRK has taken positive steps on disability issues, but there is still a long way to go to realize the rights of persons with disabilities: “I hope that my visit will generate further opportunities for constructive engagement to advance the human rights of persons with disabilities in the DPRK.”

Catalina Devandas Aguilar is the first UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities.

Since 2014, she was appointed by the United Nations to help realize the rights of persons with disabilities. Her appointment acknowledged a lifelong commitment to the promotion of human rights, and her trajectory defending the rights of persons with disabilities.

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2018-06-05

Progress so far: an overview of the first 3 years of mandate

Progress so far: an overview of the first 3 years of mandate

Ms. Devandas is in her 3rd year as UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities; a mandate she will hold until November 2020. This is a summary of the priorities and strategies established to advance the rights of persons with disabilities, and of the progress made.

2018-03-09

Progreso hasta hoy: un balance de los 3 primeros años de gestión

Progreso hasta hoy: un balance de los 3 primeros años de gestión

A tres años de su designación, Catalina Devandas está comenzando su segundo y último período como Relatora Especial de la ONU sobre los derechos de las personas con discapacidad. Para conmemorar la ocasión, su equipo elaboró un resumen de lo acontecido hasta el día de hoy, centrándose en las prioridades y estrategias que se establecieron al inicio del mandato, y el progreso realizado.

2018-02-22

Forced sterilization of young women and girls with disabilities is a crime, and must be eliminated

Forced sterilization of young women and girls with disabilities is a crime, and must be eliminated

Protecting their right to decide over their body and sexuality is essential to end the violence, exploitation and abuse against women.

Working together

To improve the situation of persons with disabilities, we need to work together. The inclusion of persons with disabilities in human rights and development work can only come about through shared understanding and cooperation.

For inquiries related to the work of the Special Rapporteur, please contact sr.disability@ohchr.org

To communicate information regarding specific cases of violations of the rights of persons with disabilities, please go to the following section of the website of the Office of the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights:

spsubmission.ohchr.org

Office of the Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities:

Mailing Address:
150 route de Ferney, PO Box 2100
CH 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland

How to submit information to the Special Rapporteur:

Mailing Address:
150 route de Ferney, PO Box 2100
CH 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland

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