School of Law

Professor Lawson and PhD students speak about disability rights at Hong Kong University

23 June 2015 | Peter Edwards

Professor Anna Lawson and two of her PhD researchers Huang Yi (Wendy) and Alex Pearl presented at a disability and equality rights conference at The University of Hong Kong (HKU).

The ‘Summer Institute of Disability Rights and Equality’ was a highly interactive 10-day interdisciplinary conference which brought together researchers, students, disabled people’s organisations and others from Hong Kong, mainland China and Taiwan.

In addition representatives from disabled people and civil society organisations working in the region provided fascinating accounts of their activism, achievements and ongoing challenges.

Anna led sessions on Reasonable Accommodation in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), focusing on a range of different substantive issues (including education, healthcare, transport, banking and the justice system).

Alex gave a presentation on Article 12 of the CRPD, legal capacity and the problems of guardianship for disabled people; whilst Wendy’s session focused on recent developments concerning the implementation of the CRPD in China.  

Other notable academic speakers included Professor Michael Perlin from New York Law School; Professor Michael Stein and Dr Fengming Cui from the Harvard Law School Project on Disability; Professor Michael Waterstone from Loyola Law School and Professor Heng-hao Chang from  the National Taipei University in Taiwan.

The conference generated lively debates and a powerful appetite for similar events in the future. The University of Leeds Centre for Disability Studies hopes to be able to host researchers from HKU and members of Chinese disabled people’s organisations for a seminar later in 2015. Efforts are already underway to find the funding that will enable this HKU Summer Institute on Disability Rights to become an annual event.

Wendy, Alex and Anna enjoyed the chance to work as a team and are all committed to building on their collaborations with colleagues in Hong Kong, China and Taiwan.

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