Experts of Committee on Rights of Persons with Disabilities Note Indonesia’s Efforts to Advance Inclusive Education

OHCHR

The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities today concluded its consideration of the initial report of Indonesia on its implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Committee Experts noted Indonesia’s efforts to advance inclusive education, while asking questions on the application of the Convention in light of the country’s distinctive geographical makeup and on the practice of shackling.

A Committee Expert noted that the Indonesian Government had made a number of efforts to advance inclusive education.

Rosemary Kayess, Committee Expert and Country Rapporteur, said Indonesia was the world’s largest archipelago nation and the Committee understood that the implementation of the Convention was

challenging and the transformation of existing frameworks was complex, given Indonesia’s distinctive geographical makeup. Saowalak Thongkuay, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur, said Indonesia had an original autonomy system, meaning each region had responsibility over its own governance and affairs, leading to differences regarding the rights of persons with disabilities. What mechanisms were in place to ensure that all municipalities applied the standards of the Convention?

A Committee Expert said Indonesia was a country where there were still shackling practices; how could the Government guarantee equal opportunity to persons with disabilities when there were regulations which affected their movement, such as shackling? Another Committee Expert asked whether there were plans to remove the explicit permission of measures such as shackling from Indonesia’s laws, and explicitly prohibit the use of physical restraints and electroconvulsive therapy?

Tri Rismaharini, Minister of Social Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and head of the delegation, said that Indonesia had more than 16,000 islands and was home to a population of more than 270 million, meaning it was challenging to handle social issues in the country. Indonesia’s geographical mandate required huge financial resources. The Government had launched a national action plan for persons with disabilities for 2021-2024 and provided social cash transfers for families who had family members with disabilities.

The delegation said that shackling was a form of torture which could still be found being enacted against persons with disabilities with mental disorders. Several efforts had been made to eradicate shackling, including a law which guaranteed all persons with mental disabilities as having equal rights with all citizens. Shackling was also prohibited in the Ministry of Health regulations. Shackling in Indonesia was based on a lack of understanding and knowledge in families, and fear that the people being shackled were a danger to those around them. The Government understood the importance of educating people to bring an end to shackling.

In concluding remarks, Ms. Rismaharini thanked the Committee for the dialogue, questions and advice provided over the course of the session. All would be taken into account in order to create a better life for persons with disabilities living in Indonesia.

Ms. Thongkuay thanked the delegation for the dialogue which gave an overview of the experiences of persons with disabilities living in Indonesia. The State party must give due consideration to incorporate disability issues and perspectives into the national development agenda and framework. The inclusion of the rights and needs of persons with disabilities was a must for ensuring human rights, social justice, and sustainable development.

The delegation of Indonesia consisted of representatives of the Ministry of Social Affairs; the Ministry of Home Affairs; and the Permanent Mission of Indonesia to the United Nations Office at Geneva.

The Committee will issue its concluding observations on the report of Indonesia at the end of its twenty-seventh session, which concludes on 9 September. Summaries of the public meetings of the Committee can be found here, while webcasts of the public meetings can be found here. The programme of work of the Committee’s twenty-seventh session and other documents related to the session can be found here.

The Committee will next meet in public on Monday, 22 August at 3 p.m. to review the initial report of Japan (CRPD/C/JPN/1).

Report

The Committee has before it the initial report of Indonesia (CRPD/C/IDN/1).

Presentation of Report

TRI RISMAHARINI, Minister of Social Affairs of Indonesia and head of the delegation, said that as the biggest archipelago in the world, Indonesia had more than 16,000 islands and was home to a population of more than 270 million, meaning it was challenging to handle social issues in the country. The Constitution stated that all citizens were equal before the law and progress had been made in regard to the implementation of the rights of persons with disabilities. In line with the Convention, the Government had launched a national action plan for persons with disabilities for 2021-2024. Several Ministries were working to provide assistance for victims and their families for crimes involving persons with disabilities and there had been at least 540 cases assisted by the team this year. In addition to free legal processes assistance, the Government was also working on the rehabilitation and recovery of their social and economic capabilities through empowerment programmes, designed individually based on the assessment of their needs and aspirations.

The Government had been providing social cash transfers for families who had family members with disabilities. The social cash transfer was designated to education, health and access to health care facility, pregnancy, childcare, and protection, and to the elderly. Cash transfer programmes were also prioritised to those living below the poverty line. By 1 September 2022, extra daily meals for persons with disabilities were going to be expanded to more beneficiaries, including orphans. The Government highlighted the achievements of young talented artists living with disabilities, whose works were sold in auctions, boosting the confidence of the artists, and opening their careers as painters.

In 2021, the State had launched the campaign Indonesia Mendengar (Indonesia Hears), created to respond to the many cases of crimes and domestic abuse against children with hearing disabilities. The Government was committed to prolong the campaign this year and hopefully beyond. Indonesia Melihat (Indonesia Sees) had a similar background. Sight disability cases were found in all ages, including children, resulting in cataract surgeries being initiated all around the country. Within the campaign, the Government had distributed thousands of adaptive blind sticks which were currently under an international patent process. Key features of the sticks included a heat detector which could trigger an alarm in case of fire; the ability to detect water; and being equipped with GPS to help the user be located if they were lost.

Ms. Rismaharini said that as Indonesia was a country that was spread over a region of a “ring of fire”, there were therefore constant challenges in managing disaster risk reduction and recovery. Safe and sound shelters for persons with disabilities during disasters were mandated by Government regulations. The implementation of the Disaster Resilient Villages project was designed to be friendly for people with disabilities. There were also Disaster Ready Kampung, which were spread out over 880 locations in 34 provinces. These had technical guidelines which included the involvement of persons with disabilities.

Skills and entrepreneurship training were provided to encourage persons with disabilities to live independently. The Government had introduced Care Shelter Workshop, an economic empowerment and vocational training for children with intellectual disabilities. During the pandemic, the Government also put extra attention to vaccination for persons with disabilities. Indonesia had submitted itself as the host of the ASEAN Paragames for 2022 after the competition was cancelled twice due to pandemic. Ms. Rismaharini said she was convinced that by sharing the same vision and knowledge on these issues and working together, challenges may be overcome to make the world a better place for people living with disabilities.

SANDRAYATI MONIAGA, Representative of the Indonesian Human Rights Commission, said Indonesia had come a long way since the Convention was ratified. This ratification had inspired Indonesia to reform the laws for persons with disabilities. Indonesia finally had a law on persons with disabilities, and on handicapped persons. The proper regulations were very important and were fundamental in developing policies in hand with the human rights principles. The Government had developed a disability inclusive development plan, mandating a national action plan on persons with disabilities. The awareness of policy makers at the national and local levels was rising.

However, Indonesia was still struggling to ensure inclusive education for persons with disabilities, strengthening access to justice, eliminating stigma, and developing policies and programmes based on a human rights approach. Regarding the prevention of torture and ill treatment, there was a need to ensure that disability rights were adopted in the Penal Code and that future laws expedited the implementation of strategies to combat shackling, and to ensure a rights-based approach in mental health services and hospitals. Nothing was impossible; by strengthening together and togetherness, everyone could work to advance the rights of persons with disabilities.

Questions from Committee Experts

ROSEMARY KAYESS, Committee Expert and Country Rapporteur, said Indonesia was the world’s largest archipelago nation with a richly diverse multi-faith population of over 250 million drawn from more than 300 ethnic groups. Recent economic growth meant that Indonesia was now the largest economy in southeast Asia and it was the fourth most populous nation in the world. The Committee was pleased to note that the Indonesian Government had adopted a dedicated law on persons with disabilities and included actions on the rights of persons with disabilities in the national action plan on human rights, among other legislation.

The Convention on Persons with Disabilities required States parties to effect legislative and cultural change to transform its society, to adopt law, policy and practice to protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights by persons with disabilities, and to promote respect for their inherent dignity. The Committee understood this was challenging and the transformation of existing frameworks was complex, given Indonesia’s distinctive geographical makeup.

Could the delegation outline any mechanisms that had been adopted for effective coordination of the efforts to implement the Convention across the five levels of government, and the strategy behind these efforts to ensure all persons with disabilities enjoyed the same standards throughout the archipelago? Was there a right of action for people with disabilities to bring claims of direct and indirect discrimination, the denial of reasonable accommodation, harassment, multiple and intersectional discrimination? If so, could information be provided on the type of remedies and redress provided?

SAOWALAK THONGKUAY, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur, said Indonesia had an original autonomy system, meaning each region had responsibility over their own governance and affairs, leading to differences regarding the rights of persons with disabilities. Could the delegation explain the process of customising national law at the provincial levels to address regional, cultural and religious differences? What mechanisms were in place to ensure that all municipalities applied the standards of the Convention? Had the Government taken steps to translate the Convention into community languages? What steps had the State party taken to ensure that indigenous people with disabilities had access to identification documents? What mechanisms had the State party taken to safeguard populations who belonged to marginalised groups?

A Committee Expert asked about the policies and mechanisms that made sure there was close inclusion of persons with disabilities concerning the implementation and monitoring of policies and rules which affected them? Were there organizations by and for persons with intellectual disabilities in the country? Or were the organizations only families who spoke on their behalf? What had been done to combat stigma and ensure that all persons with disabilities in Indonesia were treated equally? Could information be provided about the steps taken to raise awareness among State officials and government agencies about the Convention?

Another Committee Expert asked about the measures the State was enacting to ensure the effective participation of women with disabilities, with the goal being for them to have access to education, dignified jobs and access to decision making positions? What was being done to ensure that women with disabilities had access to safe spaces free from violence?

A Committee Expert asked what measures were in place to amend policies which discriminated against persons with disabilities, particularly the law on marriage? What was being done to ensure the full participation of children with disabilities and ensure adequate protection of their rights?

Another Committee Expert said that the number of women with disabilities who were victims of sexual violence was on the rise; what measures was the Government taking to resolve this serious situation? What measures were being taken to modify the law on breastfeeding, which prevented mothers with psycho-social disabilities to breast feed? What measures were being taken so that legislation could explicitly prohibit all forms of corporal punishment?

One Committee Expert asked for a concrete timeframe for the adoption of the draft law on gender equality? What measures had the State taken to monitor institutions for women and girls with disabilities? What concrete measures had the Government taken to ensure the relative rights of women and girls with disabilities? What efforts were being made to ensure the provision of sign language in State and public addresses?

A Committee Expert asked about the measures taken to implement the regulation on access to accommodation and transport?

Responses by the Delegation

TRI RISMAHARINI, Minister of Social Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and head of the delegation, said there was a law specifically for women and children with disabilities. Sexual abuse crimes which were conducted repeatedly could be met with the punishment of castration. During COVID, persons with disabilities were picked up and vaccinated and medication was facilitated for them, along with special ambulances. The central government had more than 70,000 officials spread out in over 500 regional governments. If persons with disabilities required any kind of assistance, the officials would inform centres which were spread over 31 areas in Indonesia. In daily life, Indonesia did not distinguish between religious beliefs, race, and ethnicities. In the 31 centres, there were translators present who provided day to day assistance and advocacy for persons with disabilities. Disability organizations were involved in all decision-making processes and consultations were routinely held with them; 100 families were involved in the provision of meals for persons with disabilities.

For members of women disability organizations, most were contained within church groups and mosque groups and were conjoined within social organizations. Regarding breastfeeding, there was a mandate which stated exclusive breastfeeding for children until they were two years old if the woman was able to. The Government was addressing the problem of stunting and paid special attention to the dietary needs of teenagers, so that when they gave birth it would be to healthy babies, free from the issue of stunting.

Indonesia did not differentiate between genders; women and men were equal and disability had to be provided with facilities and prioritised. Those with cerebral palsy were provided with electric wheelchairs and other equipment to assist them free of charge. Books were printed in braille and distributed to people who were visually impaired. Special radio and television programmes were also provided for persons with disabilities. Special training was provided to children with disabilities. The products created by these children were being sold annually, with the revenue being provided to them. Since the law on sexual crime, the number of violent acts committed against children had dropped drastically. Under this law, the penalty was three times more severe than normal crimes, and if done repeatedly, the person could be castrated.

Questions from Committee Experts

ROSEMARY KAYESS, Committee Expert and Country Rapporteur, asked if there were any plans to ensure that concerns relating to social care institutions were included in the national action plan for persons with disabilities? The Committee was concerned about reports on the alarming number of deaths in social care institutions. Could information be provided on the mechanisms in place to ensure people in social care institutions were not at risk?

A Committee Expert noted that according to reports, persons with disabilities were denied many of their rights, including owning property or voting, which was not in line with the Convention. What measures had been taken to abolish laws for substitute decision-making and remove or limit the legal capacity of persons with disabilities under guardianship? What was the number of persons with disabilities under guardianship in Indonesia? How often were guardianship decisions reviewed? How many people had had their guardianship stopped or removed in the past five years? How many people with disabilities lived in institutions in Indonesia today?

Another Committee Expert asked for information on persons with disabilities regarding the national action plan on human rights?

One Committee Expert noted that a law allowed for polygamy or divorce for men whose wives were mentally or physically incapacitated; what was being done to modify this law?

What measures were in place to develop a disaster risk reduction strategy for persons with disabilities? What efforts were being made to strengthen the humanitarian response and protection of persons with disabilities during emergencies? What efforts had been made towards including persons with disabilities in the judicial system? What measures were in place to ensure that persons with disabilities, especially children and those with leprosy, had access to birth registration and other certificates on an equal basis with others?

A Committee Expert noted that certain laws stated that persons with disabilities could be deemed to be incompetent; what measures was the State doing to abolish these laws? Indonesia was a country where there were still shackling practices; how could the Government guarantee equal opportunity to persons with disabilities when there were regulations which affected their movement, such as shackling?

What legislative and policy measures were put in place in mental hospitals and social care institutions to ensure that instances of sexual violence against women and girls with disabilities were identified, investigated and prosecuted? Were there any protective mechanisms in place to ensure that issues of violence and abuse of persons with disabilities were reported without fear, and that access to victim support was provided?

Another Committee Expert said there was a problem which started in 2017 regarding training in information in technology. What was the impact of this training? Had there been an evaluation of this programme? What specific assistance was the government giving to enable persons with disabilities to make choices on where to live and to live with whom they wanted?

A Committee Expert asked about the measures that were taken or planned to be taken to abolish all legislative provisions allowing the holding of persons with disabilities in institutions without their consent? What measures were being taken to prevent and punish cruel actions, such as not allowing persons with disabilities out of their cell in institutions? How did the State plan to enhance the work of the taskforce to lead efforts for deinstitutionalisation?

Was there a budget that could be allocated to undertake the deinstitutionalisation of individuals?

SAOWALAK THONGKUAY, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur, asked what steps had the State party taken to ensure that disability perspectives were included in policy programmes and activities concerning gender equality and gender identity?

A Committee Expert asked for information to be provided to the Committee about the age and gender and the accommodation and procedure processes for persons with intellectual disabilities? Could information be provided about the legal aid services and psychosocial counselling and safe housing and shelters for women with disabilities who were victims of sexual violence and rape. How did the Indonesian Government prevent forced abortion for women with disabilities?

Climate change was a pressing reality; were persons with disabilities being included in the prevention and solution of this, particularly those in rural areas? The Committee was concerned about persons with psycho-social disabilities in institutions and it was known that medical interventions were carried out without their consent. Someone in an institution could be indefinitely constrained, shackled and locked into cells and mortality rates were high. What was being done to end these inhumane situations?

A Committee Expert said that refugees with disabilities had limited access to education; did the Government have any plan to broaden this group’s access to education and healthcare, and provide education to them in accessible formats, including on how to access education and healthcare?

SAOWALAK THONGKUAY, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur, noted that persons with disabilities could not access an identification card. There had been no significant efforts from the Government to ensure that people with mental health and psychosocial disabilities, living in institutions, had access to identification documents. How would this situation be improved?

Responses by the Delegation

TRI RISMAHARINI, Minister of Social Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and head of the delegation, said a 30 per cent quota for women was mandated in election law. In 2021, more than 4,700 persons with psychosocial disorders had been freed from shackles. Since Ms. Rismaharini had held her position as the Minster of Social Affairs, she had encouraged all persons with disabilities to obtain health insurance and to access healthcare at any time. The national health insurance was necessary for all persons with disabilities, so that families of those with psychosocial disorders who were underprivileged did not need to be afraid of accessing medical treatment in hospitals, which was often a reason that family members put people in shackles. Reports stated that institutions in Indonesia were violating human rights; this would be monitored. After people had been removed from shackles, they were brought to hospitals, and most of them had recovered. They were also provided with medical and financial assistance which enabled them to return to society. All persons who had psychosocial disorders were provided with assistance, even in cases where the person could not inform the Government of their identity.

Starting September 2022, three meals per day would be provided to persons with disabilities. Health services were provided in hospitals, as well as through government social rehabilitation facilities. Women with disabilities had the right to access reproductive health, to receive or deny the use of contraception and to receive additional protection from violence, including sexual violence or exploitation. The political rights of persons with disabilities were regulated and accessibility was provided so that voting could be conducted, with assistance provided by election officials. Assistance was also provided for persons with disabilities to seek income independently, including through tools, equipment and capital.

The Government regularly encouraged opportunities for persons with disabilities to express themselves, including through painting and music, and these skills could also support their livelihoods. Indonesia was a diverse country, containing several ethnic groups which opposed the use of modern technology. However, the Government would continue to educate these people and provide dispensation for such regions to deliver public services.

Ms. Rismaharini said that during the pandemic, the Government had enacted the same policies to all Indonesians. The pandemic had caused substantial casualties, not just to persons with disabilities. The Government provided training for when natural disasters struck, including spatial awareness training. Free medical checks, hearing aid equipment, and translating voice to text was provided to people with hearing impairments, free of charge, and the Government aimed to provide sign language interpreters at all public events. Children with disabilities were actively encouraged to participate in activities and enrol in schools. The Government was working to ensure that people with disabilities who were underprivileged could be given a decent place to live on the ground floor of government apartments, at a rate of no more than one U.S dollar.

It was often the case that families abandoned or shackled persons with disabilities with psychosocial difficulties, due to fear or ignorance. There were no restrictions for persons with disabilities to travel; in most cases the Government provided assisted travel to treatment centres or hospitals at the provincial level. If a family was unable to care for a child with a disability, the child would be allocated to the extended family, or the Government would care for the child in the case that the extended family was not able to provide care. The Government was currently trying to build community centres which would allow children in remote locations to access education online.

Ms. Rismaharini said the number of persons with disabilities within the work force continued to increase, and was currently at almost 22 per cent in the government sector and nearly 1 percent in the private sector. Disability friendly job training centres had been constructed in communities and were managed by the Government. The national human rights action plan from 2021 to 2025 was an affirmative action initiative in the fulfilment of human rights in terms of equality, particularly regarding the rights of persons with disabilities. In 2022, an action plan would be developed for the Government, focusing on the protection of human rights for persons with disabilities.

There were several problems noted by the Committee, including on the mandates of the central and regional governments. Indonesia’s geographical mandate required huge financial resources. The delegation would be very grateful for recommendations, including from civil society organizations, as this situation was physically difficult, requiring extensive travel time for many hours by plane and boat to reach children who required assistance. Ms. Rismaharini said she had to ride a motorcycle with a policeman for several hours to help children with disabilities who were under duress. She hoped the Committee’s input would provide enriching advice.

Questions from Committee Experts

ROSEMARY KAYESS, Committee Expert and Country Rapporteur, asked if the delegation could provide information on the situation of persons with disabilities in Papua and what measures were being taken to ensure their protection and safety during the current civil conflict? Was the Government taking action to address the perverse outcome where the initiative to release people from shackling had resulted in people being forcibly placed in institutions? Could the delegation provide information on whether the sterilisation of women and girls with disabilities without their consent was prohibited, including in institutions? What measures had been taken to ensure the rights to cultural and linguistic identity of indigenous people with disabilities in Indonesia?

A Committee Expert asked whether there were plans to remove the explicit permission of measures such as shackling from Indonesia’s laws, and to explicitly prohibit the use of physical restraints and electroconvulsive therapy?

Another Committee Expert asked about measures in place to prohibit the separation of children from their mothers, including those confined in institutions? What measures were in place to ensure access to reproductive and sexual service care for women and girls with disabilities? What specific measures were being taken to ensure that persons with disabilities were not excluded from programmes targeting employment and equal renumeration?

What measures were being implemented to remove prerequisites for entry into higher education? How many people with disabilities were involved in ongoing education?

What measures were in place to adopt sign language as an official language and improve the availability of qualified sign language interpreters? What was being done to encourage the use of Braille and Easy Read in the State party?

Did the Government have programmes for making schools physically accessible for persons with disabilities? Were students provided with support, including assistive technologies to assist in their learning progress?

A Committee Expert said reports on cases of torture in Indonesia had been received, including situations where students with hearing impairments were punished for using sign language. Could this situation be explained?

Another Committee Expert said the Indonesian Government had made a number of efforts to advance inclusive education. Did the State party have preparation plans to encourage children with disabilities to attend mainstream schools? Were there plans to ensure that persons with disabilities enjoyed their right to vote on an equal basis with others?

What was being done to raise the level of employment for persons with disabilities, particularly those who were black?

The social system in Indonesia allowed persons with disabilities to receive benefits which were not income-tested. What measures was the State intending to put in place to ensure persons with disabilities received social benefits themselves directly?

SAOWALAK THONGKUAY, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur, asked what steps were being taken to eliminate the harmful practice of depriving persons with disabilities from getting married? What measures had been taken to provide health services to asylum seekers with disabilities in Indonesia?

A Committee Expert asked about the conditions of persons with disabilities in institutions and who was monitoring them? Were persons with disabilities involved in political and public life?

What measures were being undertaken in cases when the immediate family was unable to provide care for persons with disabilities, within the extended family and the community?

Responses by the Delegation

TRI RISMAHARINI, Minister of Social Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and head of the delegation, said she had visited Papua 11 times. The Ministry worked together with all churches in Papua to resolve the issues there. Seventy housing units for displaced persons had been constructed and Ms. Rismaharini had been able to interact with the children there who were isolated from the outside world. There were also plans to teach children from Papua online.

The delegation said that 13,000 asylum seekers were hosted in Indonesia. The Government worked together with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees to provide asylum seekers, including those with disabilities, with basic necessities.

The Government was committed to protecting vulnerable groups in disaster situations, including persons with disabilities. The Government was also pushing for a community-based model which involved persons with disabilities and placed them as the key subject of disaster management. Several programmes were in place for disaster preparedness, including villages which were resilient to disasters, spread over 800 locations in 34 provinces. Training programmes on the technical aspects of these villages had been rolled out, and representatives of persons with disabilities were present.

Shackling was a form of torture which could still be found being enacted against persons with disabilities with mental disorders. Several efforts had been made to eradicate shackling, including a law which guaranteed all persons with mental disabilities as having equal rights with all citizens. Shackling was also prohibited in the Ministry of Health regulations. The main challenges faced regarding shackling was a lack of resources, including health workers. Outreach had been conducted in the province of east Java regarding the prohibition of shackling. Shackling in Indonesia was based on a lack of understanding and knowledge in families, and fear that the people being shackled were a danger to those around them. The Government understood the importance of educating people to bring an end to shackling.

The Indonesian Election Committee had come up with several laws to ensure accessibility during the election, including the law of 2018 which ensured that the election booths were disability-friendly. People with visual impairments were given special rooms and extra assistance. The Government ensured that accessibility was a principle in the conduct of elections, to enhance the participation of persons with disabilities in the electoral process.

The Government paid high attention regarding accessibility for children with disabilities and their right to receive education, and continued to push for the enhancement of a legal framework in this area. The Government acknowledged that there needed to be an increase in the quality and quantity of inclusive education. Training was required for educators, including in identifying special needs students. The Government was consistently monitoring and advocating for the fulfilment of the minimum quota of persons with disabilities to be employed in State-owned enterprises. A taskforce had been established in multiple provinces to prevent sexual harassment in the workforce.

The Government ensured that people with disabilities had equal rights in receiving COVID-19 vaccinations and were provided with health services. These included a programme to stimulate and detect developmental difficulties in toddlers. Those with disabilities who were underprivileged were provided with health assistance which was paid for by the Government. Regarding shackling, the Ministry of Social Affairs continued to campaign for a more humane treatment for persons with disabilities. There were several challenges in the monitoring of institutions and the Government would improve this in the future.

Several laws had been formulated regarding cultural life for persons with disabilities, including the use of Braille and audiobooks. The Marrakech Treaty had been ratified to facilitate materials for those who were visually impaired. The Government of Indonesia had a facility of sports for persons with disabilities, which enabled veterans and military officials who had been injured to continue to do sport. The Government understood the importance of data on persons with disabilities. So far, disaggregated data had been collected by various agencies. The data owned by the Government was openly accessible as part of efforts to disseminate information about persons with disabilities to the public. In a virtual forum between Indonesia and Australia, a disability development was discussed as part of the partnership between the two countries. The issue of disabilities was also of strategic importance between Indonesia and agencies of the United Nations. Implementation and monitoring of the Convention was undertaken by various line agencies.

TRI RISMAHARINI, Minister of Social Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and head of the delegation, said a new institution, the national disability commission, would continue to enhance its capacities through cooperation with the disability rights indicator assessment team, along with the national human rights institute of Indonesia. Finding the best solution for those who lived with disabilities remained an ongoing process. If everyone was able to see the same vision, those challenges could be overcome.

Closing Remarks

TRI RISMAHARINI, Minister of Social Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and head of the delegation, thanked the Committee for the dialogue, questions and advice provided over the course of the session. All would be taken into account in order to create a better life for persons with disabilities living in Indonesia.

SAOWALAK THONGKUAY, Committee Expert and Co-Rapporteur, thanked the delegation for the dialogue which gave an overview of the experiences of persons with disabilities living in Indonesia. The fruitful dialogue had provided information with respect to the Convention. Indonesia had to take into account the mandates and regulations of autonomous regions, which was a challenge. The State party must give due consideration to incorporate disability issues and perspectives into the national development agenda and framework. The inclusion of the rights and needs of persons with disabilities was a must for ensuring human rights, social justice, and sustainable development. The State party could consider creating a consistency mechanism to ensure the implementation of all national affairs in accordance with the Convention. Ms. Thongkuay expressed thanks for Indonesia’s efforts to promote the human rights and wellbeing of persons with disabilities.

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