An impact evaluation of a rights-based approach to disability in Cambodia
Palmer, Michael (2016). 'An impact evaluation of a rights-based approach to disability in Cambodia' Paper presented at the annual conference of the HDCA, Tokyo 2016.
Worldwide persons with disabilities face a range of barriers to participation that impede them from reaching their potential as productive members of society. The recent entry into force of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in May 2008 represents an international milestone in protecting the rights and equalising the opportunities of people with disabilities (United Nations, 2008). Ratifying countries have introduced national legislation designed to equalise the rights and opportunities of people with disabilities in accordance with the international convention on the rights of persons with disability. To date, there has been little robust analysis of the impact of these legislative changes. This represents a considerable knowledge gap that has practical implications for the development of efficacious strategies to improve the lives of people with disabilities.
This research proposes to take the first steps in filling this gap by evaluating the impact of Cambodia's 2009 Law on the Protection and the Promotion of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Disability Law) and specific 2010 sub-decree which mandates employment quotas for workers with disabilities at public and private institutions. Using national living standards data and a difference-in-difference design, the study will evaluate the impact of the Disability Law on employment outcomes for the working aged disabled population in Cambodia. The availability of nationally representative independent cross-sectional disability and employment data collected on an annual basis from 2007-2014 in the Cambodian Socio-Economic Survey provides a unique opportunity to undertake the first evaluation of a legislative scheme designed to implement a rights-based approach to disability in a low or middle income country setting. This has important implications for advancing knowledge on the efficacy of international conventions in protecting the rights, and informing policy on equalization of opportunities, of persons with disabilities worldwide.