During the last year, EDF was given the opportunity to present its views in the European Parliament on the draft report on ’women with disabilities’ of the Committee on Women’s rights and gender equality. EDF worked closely with the Committee Members and with the European Parliament Disability Intergroup to ensure that the voice of the disability movement is heard. Promoting the rights of women and girls with disabilities is one of key aspect of EDF’s work; we are mainstreaming the rights of women and girls with disabilities in our work as well as taking specific actions to promote their rights, as for example the 2nd Manifesto on the Rights of Women and Girls with Disabilities in the European Union.
EDF welcomes the fact that all its recommendations were taken on board and in particular welcomes the reference made to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the EU 2011-2020 Gender Equality Pact and the EU Plan of Action on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (2010-2015).
Among others, the report highlights that:
- Member States have to ensure that women and girls with disabilities enjoy equality before the law and are entitled to equality of legal protection and legal benefits;
- changing the situation of women and girls with disabilities lies in including disability in all programmes, measures and policies on gender, as well as developing specific measures for them. In this sense, the report urges the Commission to develop a gender approach in the mid-term review of its European Disability Strategy 2010-2020;
- it is important to optimize the use of EU funding instruments, particularly the Structural Funds in order to promote accessibility and non-discrimination regarding women with disabilities;
- the EU and Member States need to take all appropriate measures to protect women and girls with disabilities, both within and outside the home, from exploitation, violence and abuse and to facilitate their access to justice through community-based assistance and support.
An-Sofie Leenknecht | EDF Human Rights officer | firstname.lastname@example.org