Ombudsperson for Persons with Disabilities participates in human rights conference in Morocco

The conference was organised by the Moroccan Embassy in Croatia, in partnership with the Croatian Ombudsman office and the Croatian Helsinki Committee for Human Rights. Chairman of the Moroccan National Human Rights Council Driss El Yazami participated in the conference as special guest.

Other speakers included Croatian Ombudsperson Lora Vidovic, and chairman of Croatian Helsinki Committee Ivan Zvonimir Cicak.

Ombudsperson for Persons with Disabilities Anka Slonjsak said she was prepared to share experiences of the Office in protection and promotion of rights of persons with disabilities with her colleagues in Morocco who will start more comprehensive work in this field.

As one sign of progress in the ten years since the implementation of the UN Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Croatia, Ombudsperson Slonjsak mentioned progress in the level of awareness on the need to include persons with disabilities and moving away from the medical model and towards the social and human rights model.

Morocco joined the Convention in 2008. Mr El Yazami spoke on the issue of gender equality in his country and important reform procedures which were implemented in order to achieve larger share of women in education and labour market.

Ivan Zvonimir Cicak said that, out of 350 Moroccan MPs, 80 are women, which brings up the percentage to 25 percent, similar to that of Croatia, meaning both countries have a long way to go to achieve greater gender equality.

Ombudsperson Lora Vidovic spoke on UN’s efforts to agree on an international document on human rights of elderly persons which would ensure community services, like for persons with disabilities, instead of institutionalisation in senior centres.