On November 11, 2020, AE director participated in the last consultation meeting to help shape the European Disability Strategy (EDS) 2021-2030 with high level representatives of the European Commission. The EU commission reaffirmed that the new EDS will cover all UNCRPD articles and ensure that “no stone is left unturned” as mainstreaming of disability rights will be key.
The meeting was attended by Vice-President for Values and Transparency in the European Commission, Věra Jourová and EU Commissioner for Equality, Helena Dalli as well as several disability organisations.
AE has actively contributed to voice the needs of autistic people at all stages of the consultation since the beginning of the review process. This high-level meeting concluded a last cycle of four thematic meetings attended by AE and held between representatives of disability organisations, key stakeholders and the European Commission on informing the future disability strategy, carried out over the last month.
The Commission is due to adopt the strategy in early 2021.
At the end of the meeting, Commissioner Dalli highlighted some of the key priorities of the new strategy:
- Unblocking the EU horizontal antidiscrimination Directive
- Promoting inclusive education at all levels
- Fostering employment of people with disabilities, including in management positions, via encouraging quotas, target and incentives
- Ensuring full participation of people with disabilities
- Accessibility of new technologies and health services
- Supporting Community-based services through EU funds
- Supporting Independent living and Deinstitutionalisation to ensure free choice of where with whom and how to live for people with disabilities
- Promoting an EU Access Board, for monitoring equal access to goods and services
- Promote freedom of movement of people with disabilities in the EU
- EU Disability card to be strengthened
- Specific actions on digital upscaling
- Ensuring proper monitoring of the implementation of the UNCRPD
- Making sure EU funding are utilized in line with UNCRPD
- Promoting an intersectional approach to fight discrimination
This week, AE also provided written feedback on the Roadmap for the Disability rights strategy for 2021- 2030 and called for an ambitious implementation of the UNCRPD at the EU-level.