The commencement of the 2012 Paralympics commencing today marks a victory for the 13 million Russian citizens living with mental or physical disability— and the 200 athletes representing them on the Russian team. In May 2012, the Russian government ratified the Convention of the Rights with Persons with Disabilities to advocate for the equality of citizens regardless of physical or mental capacity. But years of discrimination take time to break from. Human rights advocates are looking to the Paralympics with high hopes of enforcing the disability rights of Russian citizens.
Read the report and photo essays of the Human Rights Watch on “The disability rights movement in Russia.”
From the article:
Certainly, over the last 20 years, conditions for people with disabilities in Russia have improved. in Moscow and other large cities, you can actually see ramps – well, at least in the city center – or come across traffic lights equipped with a sound signal for the blind, or even find a few disabilityfriendly kindergartens and schools. however, people with disabilities are largely cut off from society and have very limited choices. So, Russia’s ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in May signaled a great moment for the country’s more than 13 million citizens with disabilities.