The Government’s approach to meeting the terms of the Unites Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (“the Convention”) is one of sustained and on-going improvement. Work is continuing on the reforms needed for an optimum level of compliance with the convention's requirements.
The Disability (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2016, which contains key legislative amendments needed for compliance with the Convention, was published on December 2016. Second Stage (Dáil) took place on 31 January and 1 February 2017, and Committee Stage on 30 January 2019.
The Bill includes provisions to establish the monitoring framework required by Article 33 of the Convention to promote, protect and monitor implementation of the Convention. It requires the involvement and participation of civil society, in particular, persons with disabilities, in the monitoring process.
The monitoring framework will include both the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) and the National Disability Authority (NDA) and will be governed by a formal Memorandum of Understanding. The IHREC Act 2014 was designed to ensure that IHREC, as Ireland’s National Human Rights Institution, fully meets the standard of independence in accordance with the Paris Principles.
Heads of Bill to provide legislative clarity on the issue of deprivation of liberty are being progressed by my colleague the Minister for Health. A report of a recent public consultation on draft legislative provisions is nearing completion. Every effort is being made to progress this legislation as quickly as possible.