Elizabeth Kamundia is the Deputy Director of the Disability Rights Division at Human Rights Watch. She has worked globally on disability rights issues, including legal capacity, mental health, independent living, access to justice, education, and disability inclusion in laws and policies, and has published widely on disability rights. Prior to joining Human Rights Watch, she worked as Assistant Director and Disability Focal Point in the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights. Her portfolio included monitoring the rights of persons with disabilities, including in mental health facilities, managing the Commission’s partnerships with organizations of persons with disabilities, parliamentary engagements on laws and policies, and supporting disability rights litigation.
Elizabeth has worked alongside people with disabilities and their representative organizations, including Users and Survivors of Psychiatry – Kenya and Kenya Association for the Intellectually Handicapped, where she led research on access to justice and legal capacity, trained legal professionals on disability rights, and led engagements with UN treaty body mechanisms.
She has also worked in academic settings, including as a legal researcher with the Centre for Disability Law and Policy, National University of Ireland – Galway, and as the disability rights and law schools project coordinator at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria, South Africa. She has also worked at the Commission on the Implementation of the Constitution of Kenya as a consultant on disability and the Committee of Experts on Constitutional Review – Kenya. Elizabeth is an advocate of the High Court of Kenya.
Elizabeth received a doctorate degree from the Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria, and graduate degrees from the National University of Ireland, Galway (International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy as an Open Society Foundations scholar) and University of Nairobi (Public International Law). She speaks English, Kiswahili, Kikuyu (Kenyan Dialect) and intermediate Kenyan Sign Language.