EDF calls on MEPs to vote for the re-establishment of the European Parliament Disability Intergroup

19 November 2014

Members of the European Parliament will vote on 24-26 November to decide which intergroups will exist in 2014-2019. EDF urges them to re-create the EP Disability Intergroup.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?

  • The Disability Intergroup, established in 1980, is one of the oldest Intergroups of the European Parliament and has traditionally been one of the most active, visible and largest, with around 100 Members from all political Groups. More than 80 MEPs from all political Groups haveapplied to join theintergroup in the new legislature.

  • The Disability Intergroup remains for the moment the political body inside the European Parliament which focuses on disability. The Intergroup plays therefore a key role to ensure that persons with disabilities are not forgotten in the European Parliament and that EU policies contribute to their inclusion in society. It has made a real difference in various areas, from accessible transport and ICT, through structural funds, to employment.

  • The Intergroup’s work is today more needed than ever . Many barriers, obstacles and discriminatory treatments continue to prevent the 80 million Europeans with disabilities from enjoying the same opportunities in society as other citizens.Persons with disabilities continue to experience severe discriminations, unemployment and exclusion. For instance, their unemployment rate is more than twice higher than persons without disabilities. Decisive legislations are on the table and need the Parliament’s commitment, such as the European Accessibility Act.

  • The EU, as well as most EU Member States, is a party to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD), the first and only international treaty the EU ever ratified in the field of human rights. The European Parliament, as legislator and as public administration, is bound to implement the Convention. The work of the Disability intergroup helps the European Parliament to respect and implement the UN Convention. The suppression of the Disability Intergroup would contradict the European Parliament’s commitment.

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