Policy Research Brief: The U.N. Convention on The Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD): A Status Report

Part of the Policy Research Brief series.
Derek K Nord PhD


A brief reviewing which countries have signed and/or ratified the United Nations (U.N.) Convention on The Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). About 10% of the world's population lives with a disability. Unfortunately, many countries lack comprehensive legislation to protect the rights of people with disabilities. In response, the CRPD was negotiated at the U.N. over several years, adopted in 2006, opened for signature by all countries and regional integration organizations in 2007, and commenced in 2008.

A country's ratification of the CRPD affirms the country's belief that persons with disabilities have fundamental rights that must be protected, supported, and reinforced (U.N., 2007). As of July 2014, there are 159 signatories and 156 ratifications and accessions to the CRPD. While the United States is a signatory to the CRPD, the country has not ratified the convention. Many countries have either ratified or signed the CRPD, but political instability in a few countries has resulted in inaction.


Volume 25, Number 2
Research and Training Center on Community Living (RTC-CL)


  • Community life
    • Civil rights
  • Specific life stage
    • Early childhood
    • Children
    • Adolescents and young adults
    • Adults
    • Seniors
  • Culture and diversity
    • International initiatives