Hungarian Parallel Report Last Week in Budapest Launched

18 Aug 2010

Rights of Persons with Disabilities or Disabled Rights?
The Hungarian Parallel Report Was Launched Last Week in Budapest


The Hungarian Disability Caucus presented the parallel report on the rights of persons with disabilities on a press conference on 10 August 2010 at the Central European University.

The report was presented by the experts of the national and international disability organisations, inter alia Gábor Gombos (Mental Disability Advocacy Centre, MDAC), Dr. György Könczei (member of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities), Melinda Kovács (Hungarian Association for Persons with Intellectual Disability, ÉFOÉSZ), Tamás Verdes (Hungarian Civil Liberties Union, TASZ), Erzsébet Földesi Szöllősiné and Lajos Hegedűs (National Federation of Disabled Persons’ Association, MEOSZ), Dr. Ádám Kósa (Hungarian Association of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, SINOSZ), and Réka Vályi (Hungarian Autistic Society, AOSZ). The government was represented by Imre Nyitrai, Vice-Secretary and Dr. Ilona Hontvári, Press Rapporteur of the Department of Social, Family and Youth Affairs of the Ministry of National Resources, and Dr. László Szőke, Chief of the Disability Department. Dr. István Lakatos, Human Rights Ambassador of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Dr. Gergely Tapolczai, MP also honoured the event with their presence.
The Hungarian Disability Caucus started to work on the document in December 2009. The coordinators of the content were Gábor Gombos (MDAC) and Dalma Földes (SINOSZ) who also did the general and technical coordination of the project together with Barbara Vitrai (SINOSZ). The project was sponsored by the Open Society Institute, EGT/Norwegian Financial Mechanism, Hungarian Environmental Partnership Foundation and Co, SINOSZ and MDAC.
The 254-page report analyses the national realization of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). The problem defined by the document as the root of most of the disability issues is the lack of a unified, legal definition of the persons with disabilities in the Hungarian legislation. The parallel report discusses the anomalies of the education, right to vote, employment, independent living, community inclusion and accessibility both by doing fact-finding based on official data and documents, and offering specific solutions for the decision makers at the same time. According to the parallel report, the problems related to disability issues can be solved and a real result can only be achieved if other fields, such as social politics, education, employment, social policy, are also included.
Beyond the legal analysis the Caucus paid special attention so that the report reflects the lived reality of people with disability, which was contributed to by the members of the participating organisations. Instead of the present exclusively assimilative and homogeneous society, the report aims an integrative one which requires reasonable accommodation according to the personal needs of the persons with disabilities (elderly, persons suffering from temporary or permanent illness etc). The improvement can not be accessed primarily by the creation of new legal norms but by the adherence of the already existing laws and by the creation of an inclusive social and political medium. Due to the final conclusion of the parallel report, there is not a single area where the national environment is exquisitely in harmony with the provisions of the CRPD. Consequently, beyond the fulfilment, there are also serious tasks of legal harmonisation that the government in power has to realise.
According to the CRPD, the Hungarian government has to prepare the first national report until next autumn. The English version of the paralell report will be sent to the Committee in order to facilitate the interactive conversation between the government and the Committee. The Conference of the State Parties will be held with civil participation on 1-3 September 2010 at the UN Headquarter in NYC.
© Dalma Földes/SINOSZ
More information on the Hungarian Deaf Association can be found at: