2012-12-03

End misuse of Independent Living terminology » ENIL – European Network on Independent Living

End misuse of Independent Living terminology

 
End misuse of Independent Living terminology
Ms Viviane Reding
Vice-President of the European Commission
European Commission
200 Rue de la Loi
1049 Brussels
CC: Mr Aurel CIOBANU-DORDEA
Director for Equality, DG Justice, European Commission
Mr Johan Ten Geuzendam, Head of Unit, Rights of persons with disabilities, DG Justice

In Dublin, 3 December 2012

Subject: Concerns about the situation of people with disabilities in the EU

Dear Commissioner Reding,

On the occasion of the European Day of Persons with Disabilities, the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL) would like to draw your attention to the deteriorating situation of people with disabilities in the European Union, the slow progress in the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and the continued failure of the Member States to develop community-based alternatives to institutional care for children and adults with disabilities.
ENIL is a platform of grassroots organisations run and controlled by people with disabilities from across Europe who believe that each person has a right to be an equal citizen, regardless of their impairment. We focus on the implementation of the CRPD and promote the use of European Union funds for the development of personal assistance, peer support and other community-based services. We oppose the use of public funding for the building or modernisation of segregating settings and condemn austerity measures which disproportionately affect people with disabilities. We also object to the misuse of the Independent Living terminology by the Member States and other actors. Our organisation is partly funded by the European Commission’s Progress Program.
  1. Lack of progress in the implementation of Article 19 of the CRPD
ENIL welcomes the fact that both the European Union and the majority of Member States have now ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This shows a commitment to improve the situation of people with disabilities in Europe, who remain the most excluded and marginalised group, and signals a shift away from the medical to the social model of disability.
However, despite the large number of ratifications, progress towards Independent Living remains inadequate. The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (‘the Committee’), which oversees the implementation of the CRPD, has so far issued two Concluding Observations in relation to EU Member States. In reference to Hungary (CRPD/C/HUN/CO/1, 22 October 2012), the Committee expressed the following concerns:

End misuse of Independent Living terminology » ENIL – European Network on Independent Living

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