January 8, 2014
Mr. Joseph Biden
Vice President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Dear Mr. Vice-President,
On behalf of the National Council on Disability (NCD), I write to applaud and thank you for your recent comprehensive efforts to further education and support for the International Disabilities Treaty, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
I had the privilege of meeting you in my personal capacity during the December holiday season, and was very encouraged when you informed me that you had spent the day seeking support, and spreading information about the importance and potential for furthering human rights by U.S. ratification of the CRPD. Since that time, as I am sure you are well aware, there has been further retrenchment from members of the Senate, indicating reluctance on the part of some previous supporters to vote for ratification.
NCD has participated in a broad educational campaign in order to dispel rumors and misunderstandings about the potential and impact of the ratification vote, including a forum the NCD cohosted in September, 2013, with more than 100 participants from key states across the country.
In concert with representatives from other federal agencies, including the State Department, former member of Congress Tony Coelho, the U.S. International Council on Disabilities (USICD), and many others, NCD has prepared informational fact sheets and facilitated dialogue aimed at identifying and explaining the importance of ratification and potential benefits to Americans at home and abroad of the treaty, which has as its founding and guiding principles, the Americans with Disabilities Act.
NCD is very grateful for the Administration’s support, and your own extensive work seeking ratification of the treaty. We stand ready to assist in any way possible to continue to provide information, and would appreciate any opportunity to assist the Administration and your office in particular during the critical weeks ahead. Please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or our legislative staff, Anne Sommers at email@example.com if we can be of any assistance.
Very Truly Yours,
National Council on Disability