I would like to introduce myself: I live in Denmark, Europe, so my environment and experience may be different from most of you.
Shortly after the death of my dear husband and colleague in the work for human rights, I got ill and found myself in a wheel chair.
I have been a member of Amnesty International (AI) since the early 60's, and thus have experienced how the organization developed from being an org only working for the release of prisoners of conscience to the present days' all round human rights org.
However I have realized that in spite of all intentions about being an all round human rights organization, AI has not at all focus on human rights of disabled people. This is the main reason why I joined Care2. I think AI should - together with disabled organizations - encourage all countries to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of Disabled People. Besides AI should - in connection with it's campaigns about human rights in different countries - draw special attention to the vulnerability of disabled people in crisis situations like war and (political) imprisonment. This is the reason why I have started a petition. I hope you will all join.
Over the years I have as a member of AI worked for children in prison, and for individual prisoners (not disabled!) in South Africa, Soviet Union, Tanzania, DDR (East Germany), Vietnam and many other countries. I have visited inmates on death row in a prison in Florida.
I have taken special interest in Mexico and as a member of AI I recently made a letter campaign for a wheel chair bound teacher who was arrested in connection with the teachers' strike in Oaxaca. He was treated in a very brutal and humiliating way. In connection with the Olympics in China I asked blind people in Denmark to join a postcard campaign for a blind Chinese human rights defender who is in prison for his defence for human rights and his protests agains the Chinese one-child policy.
However I think Amnesty International could do more, and I cannot alone change the policy of the org. Therefor I hope for your support. I believe AI could learn a lot from American organizations for disabled. You in America are far ahead of Europe when it comes to rights of disabled people.
Thank you for taking your time to read this.
God bless you all.