human right and Disability Research Essay

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Disability as a Natural Component of Being Human

It is crucial to remember that disability is a natural component of being human. At some time in their lives, almost everyone will suffer from a temporary or permanent impairment. The majority of extended households also frequently include a disabled person. Disability, however, is a contested, dynamic, multifaceted, and complicated topic. This idea develops as a result of the interaction between environmental and psychological barriers and people with disabilities, which prevents them from effectively and fully participating in social activities on an equal footing with others. People with disabilities have long been thought of as lacking basic human rights. However, in this essay, I will argue that people with disability have the right to live and receive normal attention as non-impaired individuals in the society.

The Right to Be Free from Abuse

Any human including disabled persons have the right to be free from abuse. In particular, this is because intellectually and psychologically impaired individuals have for a long time been treated differently in Indonesia. These individuals are often tied up at home with plastic ropes which can be for a day or week. They are chained and forced to live in rooms without sanitary conditions. Further, these persons including children are forced to take medications and subjected to alternative treatment such as vigorous massages by traditional healers. They do not allow the individuals to give consent to care. However, it should be recognized that these are people with intellectual impairment have the right to and should be guaranteed legal capacity, support for decision marking and equal recognition before the law and healthcare. Being free from abuse should be a right to all people since most psychologically disabled persons are secluded, chained and treated differently as compared to normal people and Human Right Watch (2016) indicates that these are human and should be treated as such. Therefore, the author contends that it is imperative to ban all forms of involuntary medical treatments, for example, electroconvulsive therapy with acquiring the person's full consent. Since intellectually impaired individuals have human rights, they should not be secluded and subjected to restraint. They are entitled to medical treatment at the moment the underlying psychological condition is realized.

The Right to Health

The human health is the most basic as well as an essential asset and this applies to all the disabled individuals. In other words, healthcare professional should understand they cannot treat them different since these are human beings. In particular, this is because the right to health is a fundamental part of human rights to life. The source indicates that all persons have the right to enjoyment of the highest available standard of mental and physical health. As such, it is clear the WHO, and United Nations recognize that individuals with a physical or psychological disability should receive equal attention as normal people when it comes to matters of healthcare. It means these individuals are entitled to getting safe drinking water, adequate sanitation, nutrition, and housing as well as health-related education. Also, they have the right to prevention, control, treatment of diseases, timely and equal accessibility to basic health services and important medicines. Also, these organizations acknowledge that health goods, services, and facilities must be offered to all persons with any form of discrimination. This includes people with a physical and mental disability which mean they have the right to access and receive good quality of healthcare. These services must be available to them by non-discrimination. It is imperative to note that this is also a right recognized in the international human rights law which gives both people with physical, psychological health problems equal considerations. According to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the right to health is also acknowledged by the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, American Conventional Right, and European Conventional for the Promotion of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Clearly, it is undisputable that disabled persons have the right to receive the highest standard of healthcare available to them and their diagnosis, treatment, accommodation, and significance not be ignored. The above conventions oversee that person with an intellectual disability can access the benefit of social and medical services which may include rehabilitation and orthopedic that allow them to be independent and prevent the development of further disabilities. Finally, most states are required by international law to provide the same quality of care to people with impairment just like others. For instance, the Conventional on the Rights of the Child acknowledges that children with disability have right to special care as well as access to rehabilitation services. Further, the World Health Organization and the World Bank (2011) focuses on the positive rights of individuals with disabilities. According to these institutions, individuals with physical impairments have the right to reproductive and sexual information, health wellbeing, education and support by the parents. Further, the Conventional on Rights of Persons with Disabilities emphasizes the support of disabled parents or guardians by the government. At the same time, the Convention entitles these impaired individuals with the right to adequate standard of living, the attention of doctors and lawyers. Therefore, it is evident that disabled people should be treated as human as governments are coerced to protect the rights to protect them. For example, as stipulated by the Conventional on Rights of Persons with under the positive rights that cover persons with impairment, governmental institutions, and social services are required to desist from removing a child unfairly from their parents or birth families. Similarly, according to the Conventions on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2013), people with impairments are guaranteed the human rights under the principles which proclaim that all members of human family are entitled to equal and inalienable rights of justice, freedom, and peace.

Economic Rights and Inclusion

Also, since persons with disability are humans, they have the accorded economic rights and should be taken into account when the government is planning, developing of policies and programs. More specifically, this is because according to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and World Health Organization (2015) justice for all human is rooted in the provision of equal economic rights. Further, this is because economic rights for all serve as the primary focal point of economic policies and plans. For one to be seen to exercise economic rights, the person must be able to take part in the economic activities as well as processes actively and equally with self-reliance and human dignity. This includes the ability of all people to access a resource such as decent work, financial capital, land, and labor. As such, every person has a right to empowerment which gives them the right to meet their basic human needs independently. It means that individuals including physically challenged persons have the right to equal opportunities to attain financial and economic independence to live productive, dignified and creative life as well as reduced inequalities related to income acquisition. Based on this description, it is clear that people with disabilities are accorded the right to be involved in the development, conceptualization, implementation, and monitoring the economic establishment of programs and policies. Further, it implies that they must be considered when it comes to the project planning as implementers and beneficiaries and all barriers to accessibility of mainstream economic operations should be eliminated. These are rights which recognize that persons with disabilities are human and should be treated as such. At the same time, this takes into account that fact that employers are responsible for providing reasonable workplace accommodation and economic infrastructure needs to be renovated or build according to the concepts of barrier feed access.

Social Inclusion

Persons with disability have the right to be involved socially in the communities' activities. Most persons with psychological and physical impairment or disability are often defined as a person rather than one's attribute which means individuals are often treated differently socially. As part of humanity, these individual have social rights as other people in the society to enable them to fully participate in their life of the society. As such, they have the right to housing, healthcare, education, sport, transport, culture, social development services, recreation and food security among others. As humans, persons with disability have the right to be included in building socially cohesive communities, allowing them to live in an environment free of barriers. They have the right to acquire support as well as ways that enable them to participate in community life. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) acknowledge these persons have the right to knowledge and skills that they can use to exercise a range of human rights, for instance, take part in politics, work, contribute to the society and raise family. More specifically, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities states that all states must ensure that persons with disabilities are given political rights and creates opportunities for them to exercise it on an equal basis as non-impaired people. All nations across the globe are coerced to oversee that these individuals are fully given a chance to participate in public life, for example, they must take part in voting and be elected for whatever seats as long as they are qualified. Therefore, both psychologically and physically impaired persons should be recognized as citizens with equal human rights. This includes providing healthcare professionals with the ability to offer equitable services to disabled individuals enabling them to live longer.

Liberty and Security

Also, disabled have human rights related to liberty and security as one of the most fundamental things entitled to everyone. More specifically, all disabled persons especially those with psychological and intellectual disability have the right to liberty because these are the individuals that are most likely to face insecurity and infringement of their freedoms. Each human being has the right to fair hearing and justice, and no one should be detained because of their impairment. This is why the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has banned deprivation of liberty based on the perceived or actual impairment which means people are accorded the right to equal recognition in the judicial system despite their mental status. As such, state parties are required to refrain from practices that deny persons with disability the legal capacity leading to their detention against their will, either without informed or with the consent of substitute of the decision-maker. This is also related to the issue of non-consensual commitment in health facilities. Involving persons with disability in the involuntary commitment violates the right to liberty and security of individuals. In particular, this is because the act denies the person the right to legal capacity to make a decision about care, admission, and treatment. All health and medical organizations are under an obligation to obtain free and informed consent from a disabled individual. Therefore, healthcare professionals need to make consultations to ensure the direct engagement of a person with a disability. The right also protects them from abuse, violence, and ill-treatment. People have the right not to be forced to take part in treatments or procedures they do not consent to or be secluded. These are a form of torture and inhuman or degrading practices. At the same time, such acts are perceived to be punishment against persons with impairments.


Indeed, individuals with disabilities often face numerous challenges such as seclusion and discrimination. They are commonly rejected with proper reasons. Further, these individuals have been treated significantly differently from normal people. For a long time, they have been seen as fewer humans. However, it has been imperative to argue and show that persons with a disability should be given equal attention as others. In other words, they are covered by all human rights that protect non-impaired individuals. These people are accorded equal opportunity, accessibility of healthcare and treatment. According to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and World Health Organization (2015), no individuals should be discriminated against in healthcare because of their psychological, intellectual or physical illness. Also, they have the right to engage in economic well-being which means they should be included in economic activities as well as processes actively and equally with self-reliance and human dignity. At the same time, these people are accorded social rights as other people in society which enable them full participation in their lives. Similarly, it has been identified that they have social, liberty, and security rights. These are rights that recognize that persons with disabilities are human and should be treated as such.


Human Rights Watch. Living in Hell: Abuses against People with Psychosocial Disabilities in Indonesia, 20 March 2016, available at: [accessed 12 June 2017]

Office of the United States Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and World Health Organization. The right to health. Available at: [accessed 12 June 2017]

Steven, Groves. The U.S doesn't need the U.N.'s Disability Treaty. Available at: [accessed 12 June 2017]

World Health Organization and the World Bank. World Report on Disability. Available at: [accessed 12 June 2017]

World Health Organization. Conventional on the Rights of Persons with Disability. Available at: [accessed 12 June 2017]

July 15, 2023

Human Rights

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