Media Release by Senator the Hon Jan McLucas

Australian re-elected as chair of UN Disability Committee

Joint Media Release with:

  • Hon. Robert McClelland MP

Attorney-General Robert McClelland and Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Carers Senator Jan McLucas today congratulated Professor Ron McCallum AO on his re-election as Chair of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities for another two years.

Mr McClelland said Professor McCallum has been Chair of the Committee since 2009 and was an inaugural member of Committee in 2008. In 2010 Professor McCallum was also re-elected as a member of the Committee for a four-year term.

“Professor McCallum has long been a campaigner for the rights of persons with a disability,” Mr McClelland said.

“His outstanding efforts were recognised when he was named 2011 Senior Australian of the Year.

“His re-election demonstrates the high regard that the international community holds Professor McCallum in and it is recognition of his ongoing work as Committee Chair to improve the rights of people with a disability worldwide.”

Australia was one of the first western countries to ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and continues to be a strong advocate for other countries to do the same.

Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Carers Senator Jan McLucas welcomed Professor McCallum’s continued appointment.

“I have the privilege of working with Professor McCallum on the Australian Government’s National People with Disabilities and Carer Council,” she said.

“He is a truly inspirational individual who has an outstanding record in upholding and safeguarding the rights of people with disabilities.”

Professor McCallum is currently Professor Emeritus at the University of Sydney and has had an extensive career in industrial relations. He was the first totally blind person to have been appointed to a full professorship at an Australian University.

In 2006, Professor McCallum was awarded an Order of Australia medal for his extensive contributions to social justice including providing assistance to visually impaired persons.