Luis Alfonso García Statement

Human Rights Watch

Honorable Representatives of Political Parties,

My name is Luis Alfonso García. I am a member of a group of self-advocates determined to be trained to participate in the public life of our country.

We are a group of young people with disabilities, gathered with the clear objective of exercising a right we have not been allowed so far: the right to participate in collective decisions.

I would like to introduce you to Fernanda, María, José, Diego, and Bryan Russell who came from Peru to share his experience as candidate for the Peruvian Congress with a group of Mexican activists with intellectual disabilities. Standing from left to right María José Gutiérrez, María Fernanda Castro; sitting from left to right Bryan Russell, Diego Ortiz, and Luis Alfonso García.

My name is Luis Alfonso García. I am a member of a group of self-advocates determined to be trained to participate in the public life of our country.

We are a group of young people with disabilities, gathered with the clear objective of exercising a right we have not been allowed so far: the right to participate in collective decisions.

I would like to introduce you to Fernanda, María, José, Diego, and Bryan, who came from Peru to join us at these meetings.

Our inclusion is necessary now.

We do not want to postpone it anymore.

The fact that we have disabilities, in this case intellectual disabilities, should not be an obstacle for us to have control over what we want and be allowed to make proposals.

Some human rights organizations are helping us to create a space where we can discuss how we want our lives to be and how to improve our country.

To make ourselves known, we have had meetings to share our opinions, experiences, and ideas.

We want to exercise our right to participate in the political life of our country.

And that is why we have come together today.

Over the last years, people with disabilities have worked not to be seen as persons with limitations, but as people who can make valuable contributions to our country, our families and our lives.

We are convinced that we can contribute to change and need to be heard and taken into account. We have been working on a manifesto that will be delivered today. We would like to know your opinion on this matter and how you can support us to guarantee our right to participate in political life.

Many thanks!

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