Putting fundamental rights of persons with disabilities on the map

by Carla Denly
Director of Communications, UCLA’s WORLD Policy Analysis Center, December 2, 2016

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More than 1 billion people globally – 15% of the population – live with a disability, and despite efforts like the landmark Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to improve their lives, critical gaps remain, concludes a new study by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. About ¾ of the world’s nations lack constitutional guarantees of equal rights for the disabled – including the US. Jody Heymann, founding director of the WORLD Policy Analysis Center and dean of the Fielding School, said that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) significantly reduced barriers to affordable health care for people with disabilities. “However, particularly as the ACA and other laws are facing new threats,” Heymann points out, “the importance of a foundation of constitutional equal rights is clear.”

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