About the conference

The 2019 Annual Conference provided an opportunity to share valuable Irish and international experience regarding how the UNCRPD should be used to drive policy development in order to deliver positive change for people with disabilities.

The conference allowed for discussion on the lessons that could be learned from other countries who have navigated the implementation and review process, and what could be expected from the first reporting cycle.

The conference consisted of the Plenary session followed by three simultaneous afternoon sessions focusing on Article 9: Accessibility; Article 19: Independent Living and being included in the Community and Article 27: Employment.

Plenary session

  • Implementing the UNCRPD - a Committee member's view: Damjan Tatic, former member of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
  • The UNCRPD: Progressive Realisation - the experience of Norway: Thea Bull Skarstein, Senior Analyst, Norwegian Ministry of Culture, Department for Gender Equality, Non-Discrimination and International Affairs
  • What has the UNCRPD achieved to date? A Practical Insight from Austria: Christine Steger, Chair of Austria's Independent Monitoring Mechanism for the UNCRPD
  • The lived experience perspective on UNCRPD: Brian Hayes, Chair of the National Platform for Self Advocates

Afternoon sessions

Session 1. Article 9: Accessibility

Walkability in the Community: Dr. Ger Craddock (Centre for Excellence in Universal Design)

The Customer Communications Toolkit - eliminating barriers to accessible communication: Grace O'Regan (Department of Public Expenditure and Reform)

Session 2. Article 19: Independent Living and being included in the Community

19 Stories of Social Inclusion: Lessons for Policymakers: Nóirín Clancy, Tómas Murphy and Christine Magee (Inclusion Ireland)

Inclusion in what? - a local perspective on opportunities for participation and support at community level: Siobhán O'Brien (Wexford Local Development)

Achieving a right to personal assistance in Ireland: James Cawley (Independent Living Movement Ireland)

Session 3. Article 27: Employment

Sharing the learning from AHEAD's Willing Able Mentoring (WAM) programme: Ann Heelan (AHEAD)

The story of OWL: Margaret Crawley (OWL progamme), Catherine Kelly (WALK) and Peter Furlong (KARE)

Creating a strategy to promote and support entrepreneurship for people with disabilities: Pauline Brennan (Enterprise Ireland) and Marion Wilkinson (NDA)