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Sense International urges Kenyan government to act on UN Committee’s concluding observations

21 September 2015

Sense International, a charity that works for people with deafblindness, has today (21 September) responded to the Concluding Observations from the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities – the independent UN body that reviews the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

The observations, which highlight principal concerns and recommendations for Kenya, follow last month's meeting between the senior Kenyan delegation and the Committee in Geneva.

Following a briefing submission from Sense International, which highlighted gaps in the enjoyment of the rights of persons with deafblindness, the Committee posed questions to the Kenyan government on the measures that they had taken to address social exclusion and access to services for persons with deafblindness. The Kenyan delegation, led by the Attorney General and comprised of various senior government officials, did not provide a response to the Committee.

Bailey Grey, Advocacy and Policy Manager at Sense International, said:

“Sense International is pleased that awareness was raised about the situation of persons with deafblindness in Kenya to senior officials.

“We agree with the Committee’s concerns on the lack of information regarding the measures that the Kenyan government has taken to ensure the protection and inclusion of deaf, blind, and deafblind children in society.

“We also welcome the recommendation for the Kenyan government to take measures to assess the situation of girls and boys who are deafblind and ensure that public policies and programmes are responsive to their specific needs. 

“Sense International will be sharing its ideas with the Kenyan government on how they can assess and improve services for children with deafblindness so that they can enjoy the same rights as other children. For example, we feel that the government could collect better data, conduct a policy review, assess civil servant understanding of deafblindness and increase their dialogue with civil society, parents and communities.

“We further welcome the Kenyan government’s steps to arrange a meeting with civil society in Kenya, including Sense International, and urge the government to heed to the committee observations and continue to make steps to protect the rights of persons with disabilities by turning laws, policies and commitments into practice for persons with deafblindness.”

Media enquiries

For enquiries about Sense International, please contact Laura Brown at the Sense International press office on 020 7014 9381 or email laura.brown@sense.org.uk.

First published: Tuesday 18 June 2013
Last updated: Wednesday 11 October 2017