16th Session of the Conference of States Parties to the CRPD

COSP Photo

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) was adopted by the General Assembly by its resolution 61/106 of 13 December 2006. It came into force on 3 May 2008 upon its 20th ratification.

Article 40 of the Convention stipulates that “The States Parties shall meet regularly in a Conference of States Parties (COSP) in order to consider any matter with regard to the implementation of the present Convention.”

Since 2008, the following are the sessions of the Conference of States Parties that meet at United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The 16th session of the Conference of States Parties to the CRPD (COSP16) will take place at the United Nations Headquarters, New York,  from 13 to 15 June 2023.

COSP16 Bureau


President-elect(Africa): Tunisia

Sri Lanka (APG)
Georgia (EEG)
Panama (GRULAC)
Greece (WEOG)

Theme and sub-themes of the Conference

Overarching theme: Harmonizing national policies and strategies with the CRPD: achievements and challenges

Sub theme 1: Ensuring equal access to and accessibility of sexual and reproductive health services for persons with disabilities
Sub theme 2: Digital accessibility for persons with disabilities
Sub theme 3: Reaching the under-represented groups of persons with disabilities

Provisional agenda and program 

Informal Briefings to States Parties and Civil Society

An Informal briefing took place on 12 May 2023 in Conference Room 11 at the UN Headquarters in New York from 3pm to 6pm to States Parties and stakeholders, co-organized by the Permanent Mission of Tunisia and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA).


UN Accessibility Centre

Practical Information to COSP Participants 

  • The COSP16 will be held as an in-person meeting. In the general debate and roundtable discussions, speakers from the audience are required to send a copy of their intervention in MS WORD and PDF format via emailing to estatements@un.org no later than 3 hours before the respective meeting but preferable earlier for accessibility. 
  • The United Nations Accessibility Centre offers assistive information and communications technology to support those with auditory, visual or physical impairments. The assistive devices are available on-site or as a loan to participants with disabilities. The Accessibility Centre is located in the Conference Building (first basement level, by the Secretariat Building escalators). Please contact accessibilitycentre@un.org for enquiries regarding available assistive tools and other accessibility accommodations related requests. For more information, please visit https://www.un.org/dgacm/en/content/accessibility
  • The Meetings Support Section also offers print-on-demand service for meeting participants requiring braille copies of official documents. Please send braille requests to accessibilitycentre@un.org at least 24hrs in advance of the meeting date for processing. The printouts can be collected at the Accessibility Centre located on the first basement of the Secretariat building at Office number S-1B032. For further enquiries please contact +1 212 963 7348 / 9 or by email accessibilitycentre@un.org.

Download the Information Note for Participants

Accessibility Centre Maps

Seating Arrangement for Delegations

Delegations shall obtain a valid United Nations grounds pass for all national delegation members whose names are reflected in their credentials submitted via e-DELEGATE portal in order to gain access to the United Nations headquarters.

Delegations shall be aware, when designating representatives and alternates to in-person meetings, there is a seating capacity limitation for each delegation at a particular meeting,  and specifically, each delegation will have 1+5 seats in the General Assembly Hall and 1+1  seats in the Conference Room 4 during the 16th session.

COSP Photo

General Debate

The General Debate will be organized and will begin on the first day of the conference. Inscription to speakers list will be open from 22 May at 10am, and close on 5 June at 6pm (New York time). The mandatory contents for the inscription includes the full name, representation level and official title of the inscribed speaker, as well as the email address of the inscription submitter, must be provided.

The speaking limit for each statement will be 3 minutes for national statement (5 minutes for a joint statement on behalf of a group of States) which will be strictly enforced with the speaker’s microphone be cut off automatically. Individual reasonable accommodation will be granted for persons with disabilities and needs must to be clearly indicated in the inscription and communicated in advance.

All States Parties and Signatories to the CRPD are requested to inscribe their speaker through the e-Delegate/e-Speakers portal link.

Registered United Nations Entities, Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs), National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) are requested to inscribe to the speakers list  to register their speaker details with all requested information by 5 June at 6 p.m ( New York time). Please use this online form to register.

Please kindly take note that when you successfully submit your filled registration form online, a short line of text will displayed automatically in your computer screen showing that your registration has been submitted successfully. And please consider to save and keep a copy of that online acknowledgement pager as a record for reference. If you have any questions, please contact us by email at socialngo@un.org with the subject "COSP16 List of Speakers".

Guidance Note on the General Debate

UN Guidelines for Pre-recorded Video Statements


The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) has sent a  Note Verbale (DESA-23/00178, dated 26 January 2023) by which the secretariat is pleased to:

(1) Notify States Parties and Observers of the convening of the 16th session in New York from 13 to 15 June;

(2) The e-Credentials/e-Delegate services will be made available to delegations starting from 1 March 2023 for the submission of a scanned copy of their credentials for the 16th session of the Conference of States Parties. The original copy of the credentials shall be submitted to the secretariat at the conference room-General Assembly Hall of the opening meeting on 13 June.

(3) States are kindly requested to inform their delegates of any specific accessibility requirements and forward this information via email to enable@un.org as soon as possible by May 1st in order to help ensure accessibility for all participants.

Download the step-by-step Guidance on how to submit credentials to the General Assembly meetings via the e-Credentials portal.

If delegations experience any technical issues using the e-DELEGATE portal for submitting their Credentials, please direct inquiries to the Secretariat: missions-support@un.int.

COSP Photo

Accessibility Requirements

The United Nations is committed to promotion of accessibility and  inclusion for persons with disabilities at and beyond the Headquarters. All efforts and measurements such as  seating adjustments will be made where feasible to best accommodate the needs of all  participants with disabilities who have notified well in advance their specific accessibility needs.

Delegations that have delegates whose specific accessibility needs  requires special attention and accommodation but still have not notified the secretariat shall consider to do so IMMEDIATELY, by emailing to enable@un.org. The earlier the secretariat is informed about individual needs, the easier it is to arrange them. Please send the following details:

  1. Specific accessibility needs such as wheelchair access, hearing loops usage, documentation in Braille, large print, or sign language usage
  2. The name of the delegation and individual delegate especially when the delegate will expect speak on behalf of the delegation in a meeting. 

Delegations are requested to  also include specific accessibility needs details of their speaker, if applicable,  when inscribing to the List of Speakers for the General Debate.

The deadline is now CLOSED.

National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) Participation

National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) interested in attending the 16h session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (COSP16) must complete this online application form. The deadline for receiving this application form is 8 May 2023. 

If you have any questions, please contact us by email at socialngo@un.org with the subject "COSP16 NHRIs".


Civil Society Forum

12 June from 10 AM to 2 PM EDT Conf. Room 4, UNHQ, New York

The Civil Society Coordination Mechanism, facilitated by International Disability Alliance, is hosting the Civil Society Forum, as an addition to the 16th Session of the Conference of States Parties (CoSP) to the CRPD, to amplify the voice and facilitate their active participation.

Overall aims of the Civil Society Forum

  • Share experiences of Organizations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs) on the implementation of the CRPD
  • Highlight what is working and what is not working; what are new issues that persons with disabilities are facing
  • Expectations of persons with disabilities when world leaders talk about speeding up SDGs implementation at the SDGs Summit in September 2023 and plan for future challenges at the Summit of the Future in 2024

Click here to read the agenda for the Civil Society Forum.

Click here to read the PLAIN LANGUAGE version of the agenda for the Civil Society Forum

📩 Registration for the CoSP will automatically register delegates to the Civil Society Forum

The forum will be presented in two sessions:

▶️ Session 1: CRPD implementation: What is the current state of play?
▶️ Session 2: Towards a disability-inclusive SDGs Summit & Our Common Agenda

High-level speakers include:

🎤 Guy Ryder, Under-Secretary-General for Policy
🎤 Ambassador to the Mission of Tunisia, Chair of CoSP Bureau
🎤 Chair of the CRPD Committee
🎤1st Vice Chair of the International Disability Alliance (IDA)
🎤...and many more.

COSP Photo

Civil Society Participation

Registration for NGOs with ECOSOC status and NGOs Accredited to the Conference of State Parties is NOW OPEN: The deadline is now 1 June 2023. For questions related to your indico registration, please contact us by email at socialngo@un.org.

  • Please note that only NGOs with ECOSOC Status and Accredited NGOs to the Conference of State Parties (COSP) may register via indico for the COSP16.
  • Please be advised it is the responsibility of your organization to approve your registration. Upon registering, please contact your organization for approval. Your organization's designated conference focal point may select the menu item on the left to access the approval area. 
  • Due to space constraints, the numbers of attendees to the COSP16 should be kept to a minimum and should not exceed 10 representatives per organization. 

Application for New NGO accreditation is NOW OPEN: Please consult the Information Note.The deadline is 20 April 2023. For questions related to your application, please contact us by email at socialngo@un.org.

  • Only NGOs accredited by the Conference of States Parties can participate in the sessions of the Conference of States Parties. NGOs that have consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) or were accredited to the Ad Hoc Committee on the Convention are already accredited to the Conference of States Parties.
  • All other NGOs wishing to participate in the Conference of States Parties must apply for accreditation to the Conference.
  • Accreditation is a one-time process by which non-governmental organizations that have not previously been accredited become eligible to participate as observers in the Conference of States Parties (including in future sessions). Accreditation is granted to organizations and not to individuals.


Side Events 

Draft list of side events as of 3 June 2023

For any questions, please email us at socialngo@un.org and cc enable@un.org