Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Historically, disability was seen as a medical impairment, meaning that society believed people with disability had a condition or impairment that needed medical treatment. However, after WWI and WWII, many soldiers returned from war with impairments. With the increased numbers of people with disability, it was necessary to consider alternative forms of care other than institutionalisation.
During the late 20th and early 21st century, both domestically at the international level, people with disability began to heavily advocate for self-representation and self-determination of their rights. In 2006, the United Nations adopted the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), a breakthrough movement in the realisation of disability rights. The CRPD was written in consultation with people with disability and is guided by the principle of respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity.
The CRPD is made up of two core components. The Disability Convention itself, which contains the main human rights provisions expressed as a series of articles, and Optional Protocol to the Disability Convention, which is a more limited document that establishes a mechanism for people with disability to pursue a complaint if they feel that their rights have been breached by a State Party to the Convention.