The Australian Cross Disability Alliance (ACDA) provided a brief submission to the Australian Government Joint Standing Committee on Treaties, to express our unequivocal support for the ratification by Australia of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for People who are Blind, Visually Impaired or otherwise Print Disabled (Marrakesh, 27 June 2013) – which Australia signed at the Headquarters of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (‘WIPO’) in Geneva on 23 June 2014.
The ACDA is firmly of the view that ratification and implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty by Australia is critical in facilitating governments and other duty-bearers to meet our obligations and responsibilities under the human rights treaties to which Australia is a party, most notably the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) [particularly at Articles: 19, 2, 4, 9, 21, 24]. In addition, implementation of the Marrakesh Treaty would also provide a key mechanism in assisting all Australian governments to give effect to the vision, purpose, and six key outcome areas of the ten year agreed National Disability Strategy (NDS), particularly the following priority objectives:
- Increase participation of people with disability, their families and carers in the social, cultural, religious, recreational and sporting life of the community.
- Remove societal barriers preventing people with disability from participating as equal citizens.
- Focus on reducing the disparity in educational outcomes for people with disability and others.
- Ensure that government reforms and initiatives for early childhood, education, training and skills development are responsive to the needs of people with disability