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News about Down syndrome from around the world.

European conference on women with disabilities

The European Disability Forum (EDF) and the Spanish committee of representatives of people with disabilities (CERMI) organised a conference on the situation of girls and women with disabilities. The main outcome of the conference held in Madrid on 16th-18th November 2007 was a declaration on recognising the rights of girls and women with disabilities.


100 countries sign United Nations convention

An estimated 650 million people (around 10% of the world's population) live with a disability. A new UN treaty promises to promote the interests and safeguard the rights of people with disabilities everywhere.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was adopted on 13 December 2006 and opened for signature on 30 March 2007. In July, Qatar became the 100th country to sign the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The UN is now hopeful that the treaty could take effect in early 2008.


Ten years of achievement in Moscow

The Moscow charity Downside Up is celebrating its 10th Anniversary this year and I recently had the privilege of visiting their Centre and meeting the staff and many of the children and families using their services. In Russia, on average only 15% of children with Down syndrome live with their families. The rest (85%) are orphaned at birth and go straight to state institutions. In Moscow, thanks to the work of Downside Up, some 45% of new babies are now being taken home.