An implant for people who are hard of hearing, a person with a guide dog, a person with a cane and a person in a wheelchair.

UNCRC Article 23

If I am disabled, I have the right to special care and education

Disabled children should be supported to reach their full potential. They should be provided with activities with others so that they can be an active participant in their own community.

Governments should make sure disabled children receive an education, health care and opportunities to relax, play and do other activities.


Contact provides support and advice for families with disabled children.

Kindred specialises in supporting families with complex needs. They operate a helpline and provide practical information, advocacy support and guidance, as well as a counselling service for parents whose children are in the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh whether on an in-patient or an out-patient basis.

All children and young people have the right to be safe and happy. When a child or young person has a disability, people should make sure it does not get in the way of this. They should do this no matter what that disability is.

Children and young people should be cared for in a way that takes any disabilities they have into account, and they should be taught at school in a way that understands their disability.

People shouldn’t treat a child or young person badly because of their disability. They shouldn’t stop them from doing things they want to do, and they shouldn’t try to take away their rights.

Children and young people with disabilities should:

  • be able to join in with activities, and their disability shouldn’t stop them from taking part
  • be able to join in and feel included at school
  • get special care if they need it
  • be able to choose what they do and have a say in choices about their lives.

Relevant General Comments

The Committee on the Rights of the Child has produced many General Comments that help people understand how the UNCRC works in practice.

Two General Comments that are relevant to Article 23 are:

Days of General Discussion

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child facilitates Days of General Discussion where experts from around the world can discuss a child rights issue in detail. The reports of their discussions are a helpful tool to understand how the UNCRC should be interpreted.

Some Days of General Discussion relevant to Article 23 are:

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