Chris Hilderbrant, Center for Disability Rights’s Chief Operating Officer (COO), asked the Systems Advocacy Department to give everyone an update on what happened with yesterday’s vote in the Senate on the UN Convention for the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD). We’ve been sending out a bunch of action alerts lately and there are a lot of questions on just how this seemingly uncontroversial treaty became controversial.

There’s a fringe group of people who oppose anything connected with the United Nations. They have been throwing everything they possibly could at the wall to see what would stick and unfortunately, enough of their lies stuck as to convince 38 (Republican) Senators to vote against this. International Treaties need a 2/3 vote in the Senate to pass. These folks (led by former Senator and Presidential Candidate, Rick Santorum) whipped up a frenzy of folks who had interests in things that had nothing to do with this treaty and convinced them to lobby just enough Senators to bring this to defeat.

There are some amazing back stories to how all this went down, but rather than put it in my words, I’ll leave you with some links to others’ explanations.

The treaty can go back to the Senate after this lame duck session. So the fight is not over where CRPD is concerned, but stay tuned as there are sure to be some Action Alerts coming on the so-called “fiscal cliff”, Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security as well as some things happening at the State level.


Clarion Ledger:



Rachel Maddow: (cool for some old footage of ADAPT actions)

Feel free to ask any questions you may have.

Thank you,
Dean DeRusso
Deaf Systems Advocate
Regional Center for Independent Living (RCIL)

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