• There are one billion people with disabilities in the world, many of whom struggle for even their basic rights and remain invisible, abused and neglected in their communities. Many people with disabilities – physical, sensory, intellectual or psychosocial - live in poverty, lack access to health care or education, suffer physical or sexual violence, or languish in horrific institutions for years. We are working to change that. By documenting abuses against people with disabilities around the world, in close partnership with disabled peoples’ organizations and other NGOs, our research and advocacy has begun to raise awareness, strengthen monitoring and push for change. Download the complete brochure

  • Hamamatou, a 13-year-old girl polio survivor, was abandoned by her family after their village was attacked by anti-balaka forces in Central African Republic. Her brother attempted to carry her to safety, but grew exhausted, and had to leave her under a tree. When anti-balaka fighters found her two weeks later, Hamamatou described what happened: “The fighters said, ‘we have found an animal. Let’s finish it off.’” Another anti-balaka soldier intervened to save her life. Hamamatou was rescued and taken to a Catholic mission where she now lives under the care of local priests.
    (Nairobi) – People with disabilities in the Central African Republic were often left behind and struggled to flee to safety when their communities came under the brutal attacks by armed groups beginning in 2013, Human Rights Watch said today. When they did reach sites for internally displaced people, they faced difficulties accessing sanitation, food, and medical assistance. Human Rights Watch released a new video in which people with disabilities described their struggles during the conflict.


  • Use of Force against Inmates with Mental Disabilities in US Jails and Prisons
  • Abuses against Women and Girls with Psychosocial or Intellectual Disabilities in Institutions in India
  • Violence, Neglect, and Isolation for Children with Disabilities in Russian Orphanages

Disability Rights