Disability Rights Defenders


Disability Rights Defenders is a network of individuals and organizations with an interest in disability rights and disability law. Our purpose is to spread and deepen legal expertise about disability rights among disabled persons, disabled people’s organization, lawyers and law schools. We invite people interested in disability rights to join our closed facebook-group “Disability Rights Defenders” to share their experiences, methods and advice. Content shared in the facebook-group is summarized in a newsletter at least once a year. You can subscribe to the newsletter here.

 Together we spread information and knowledge on how to use the law as a tool to implement and defend the rights of disabled people. We welcome contributions in the form of brief descriptions of legal cases, court decisions, references to legislation, publications, reports as well as announcements of events, learning and funding opportunities.

Are you looking for Disability Rights Defenders Sweden? Go to https://drds.se/.

Annual Report 2018/2019

Disability Rights Defenders (DRD) / ‘IL Nordic Network’ is a network started on the 30th of May 2018 by the Independent Living Institute (ILI). This report is on the project funded by the Bente Skansgård IL Fund between June 2018 to May 2019 which was carried out to continue the development of the network.

This annual report gives a short insight to why the network is needed and what goals it has.  It describes the activities carried out through the year which include: moderating the Facebook group, collecting and editing the newsletters and organizing webinars. DRD researched court cases to build a database of cases on disability-based discrimination. Furthermore, contact details of individuals and organizations were collected to widen the network.


Webinar 'Disability Rights Defenders Network' May 2019

Independent Living Institute.  2019.  Webinar 'Disability Rights Defenders Network' May 2019.

ILI and the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL) held a webinar to introduce the work of the Disability Rights Defenders Network. The webinar took place on 20 May 2019.  This report summarizes the webinar shortly. 

Disability Rights Defenders Newsletter January 2019

  • Cases and Court Decisions
  • Participate!
  • Resources
  • Fundraising
  • Questions
  • News
  • Announcements

Disability Rights Defenders Newsletter October 2018

  • Kalle Könkkölä has left us
  • We are looking for partner organizations
  • Special topic: Law Clinics
  • Cases and court decisions
  • Questions from Disability Right Defenders
  • Announcements
  • Job openings

Disability Rights Defenders Newsletter April 2018

Reports on current legal cases

Voting rights for persons with cognitive and psychosocial impairments

Under the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 Article 21 (3) everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.

Disability Rights Defenders Newsletter February 2018

At the Independent Living Institute, we plan to start a free newsletter on legal action for protecting the rights of persons with disabilities. Many countries work for equal opportunities for persons with disabilities by adopting national legislation and signing international treaties such as the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, CRPD. Yet persons with disabilities still do not enjoy the living conditions that their fellow citizens without disabilities take for granted. In a few countries such as the US, UK or Israel, civil society organizations, in close cooperation with and accountable to disabled people’s organizations, complement state agencies in implementing the rights of these citizens. 


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