On the 8 March, the European Commission published a communication on the European Pillar of Social Rights. Once established, the Pillar should become the reference framework to screen the employment and social performance of Member States, driving the process of reforms at national level. However, it does not automatically apply to all EU countries, but only to those who wish to be part of it.
The document refers explicitly to disability and includes relevant references to the Charter of Fundamental Rights. However it is unclear what initiatives the Pillar will include in terms of legislation, funding or other policies. The aim declared by the commission is to increase the social dimension of the European monetary union, to promote decent employment and social protection. Autism-Europe, along with the European Disability Forum and other disabled people’s organisations, will issue strong messages on mainstreaming disabilities into the EU social policies. The Commission launched a public consultation that will be open until the end of 2016.