- The Permanent Mission
- Greece in the UN-Geneva
Greece's intervention to the Annual Interactive Debate on the rights of Persons with Disabilities (28th UN Human Rights Council, 10 March 2015).
"Thank you Mr President.
Greece aligns itself with the statement delivered by the European Union.
Greece would like to express its appreciation for the thematic study of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on the right of persons with disabilities to live independently and be included in the communityand we underscore the significance of ensuring the enjoyment of article 19 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Greece has ratified in 2012 the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as well as the Optional protocol to the Convention,and will soon submit its first report to the CRPD.
We recognize the importance of the right of persons with disabilities to live independently and ‘‘be included’’, which comes as a result of the combination of many factors such as their equal recognition in the society, their right to enjoy an adequate standard of living, the eradication of poverty, their right to have access to support services and personal assistance and many others.
In this regard, the Greek Constitution promotes the participation of persons with disabilities in all spheres of social, economic and political life of the country, guarantees the right of all persons with disabilities to independent living and enables the adoption of positive measures, by the State, for the protection and support of persons with disabilities as well as their right to an accessible and affordable medical assistance. Moreover, the Greek law establishes a framework towards the elimination of any form of discrimination, in particular, against women. In addition, according to relevant legislation, persons with disabilities have the right to equal employment, opportunities and education. We note that, despite budget constraints, two new public institutes of Vocational education and training were established,in Greece,in 2014.
In this connection, we would like to underline that the current international economic and social crisis should not stand as a barrier to the inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities to all levels of community life.
Last but not least we would like to emphasize the crucial role of civil society in the achievement of all the above targets and welcome NGO driven initiatives in this regard.