RID Supports Ratification of the United Nations
Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)

Signed Version>>

November 13, 2013 – Alexandria, VA –  The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. (RID) supports ratification of the United Nations (U.N.) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and urges the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the entire U.S. Senate to act quickly to ratify the CRPD.

“RID envisions a world where linguistic rights are recognized as human rights. Ratifying the CRPD would take a huge step toward making that vision a reality,” stated President Dawn Whitcher.

RID, a national organization of professional interpreters, plays a leading role in advocating for excellence in the delivery of interpretation and transliteration services between people who use sign language and people who use spoken language.

The U.N. CRPD recognizes that language and culture are an integral part of the Deaf community’s fight for equal rights. To that end, the CRPD requires a commitment to an inclusive education system that facilitates the ‘learning of sign language and the promotion of the linguistic identity of the Deaf community.’ Furthermore, ratifying the CRPD formalizes the United States’ commitment to supporting the Deaf community’s cultural and linguistic identity. RID fully supports these concepts as they parallel the principles set forth in the association’s mission and vision.

In asking Congress to support ratification of the CRPD, RID recognizes that, as the professional association of sign language interpreters, the organization is also accepting the responsibility for its implementation. Often, sign language interpreters are at the forefront of providing access to education, employment, medical care, the legal system, and all aspects of community life. RID is committed to supporting the linguistic and cultural needs of the Deaf community by working to ensure that interpreted interactions between and among individuals who use signed and spoken languages are as rich as direct communication.

All persons should be able to fully participate in a society free from discrimination where the respect for the inherent dignity of each individual is woven into the fabric of our culture. RID strongly believes that the principles set forth in the CRPD are not aspirational but achievable if there is collaboration to promote equality. RID joins the thousands of organizations and individuals who have expressed their support for ratifying the CRPD and urge quick action so that the United States may remain a leader in disability equality and inclusion.

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