Thematic report on the structure and role of national mechanisms for the implementation and monitoring of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
22 December 2009
To the HRC at its 13th session, 5 March 2010
In its resolution
10/7, the Human Rights Council requested the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to prepare a study on structure and role of national mechanisms for the implementation and monitoring of the CRPD, for consideration at its 13th session.
In all human rights treaties, the implementation obligation is closely linked to a monitoring component. The monitoring of human rights treaties is needed to assess whether measures to implement the treaty are adopted and applied, but also to evaluate their results and therefore provide feedback for implementation. Monitoring mechanisms foster accountability and, over the long term, strengthen the capacity of parties to treaties to fulfil their commitments and obligations.
The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is the first treaty that contains specific requirements on its national implementation and monitoring. The establishment or designation of adequate implementation and monitoring structures, in accordance with article 33, will strengthen the implementation of the Convention at national level. Monitoring is particularly needed to assess the adoption and effective implementation of measures and their actual impact.
The Convention distinguishes implementation of the Convention from protection, promotion and monitoring of its implementation. While implementation is the responsibility of government, protection, promotion and monitoring requires the leadership of national entities established in line with the Paris Principles and the participation of persons with disabilities and their representative organizations. According to the Convention, the two functions should not be assigned to one single entity.
Government agencies responsible for the implementation of the Convention need to be provided with effective institutional arrangements that include a focal point system and a coordination structure article 33(1). In implementing article 33(2) of the Convention, States should take the opportunity to establish entities that are compliant with the Paris Principles. A broad mandate, independence, pluralistic composition and adequate resources are essential requirements for an effective monitoring framework. National human rights institutions established on the basis of the Paris Principles are natural core entities of the monitoring framework at the national level. Where such entities already exist, implementation of article 33 might require their mandate and capacity to be strengthened. Persons with disabilities and their representative organizations need to take part in the monitoring process, as well as in any other decision-making processes that concerns them (article 33(3)).
In preparation of the study, OHCHR invited States and relevant stakeholders to present submissions by transmitting a set of questions related to existing legislation, policies and practices regarding the structure and role of national mechanisms for the implementation and monitoring of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. As a result, OHCHR received the responses listed below.
National Human Rights Institutions
NGOs and Civil Society Organizations