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  • Legal action: European Court of Human Rights fails students with disabilities

    09.07.2019 Ruling against Ştefan Stoian fails to protect the right to education of learners with disabilities, and blames their parents instead. For years Ştefan Stoain was carried on his mother’s back so he could attend his class on a second-floor classroom. On several occasions Ştefan was refused support by the school to access the bathroom, leaving him soiled and a target to bullying. Last Tuesday, the 25 June 2019, the European Court of Human Rights added one more indignity by ruling against Ştefan, a quadriplegic teenager, on a case he and his mother brought against Romania for denial of the...
    Stefan Stoian sits alone in a classroom
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  • Conference: How to make sure tax payers’ money is spent on accessibility

    28.06.2019 US$ 9.5 trillion is the estimated amount spent worldwide on the public procurement market per year on products, services, and infrastructure which are fundamental in people’s everyday lives: transport, healthcare, education, social protection, technologies or how our cities are designed. If accessibility is required, public procurement can be a means to support the inclusion of persons with disabilities, and to implement the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD). To discuss different approaches to accessibility and public procurement, on June 13th, the European...
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  • Award: Gatwick Airport wins Accessible Airport Award 2019

    27.06.2019 Gatwick Airport, in the United Kingdom was the winner of the Accessible Airport Award 2019! The award ceremony took place in Cyprus, during the Annual Congress of Airports Council International Europe (ACI Europe). It was presented to Gatwick Airport by Christakis Nicolaides, President of the Cyprus Confederation of Organizations of the Disabled on behalf of EDF Gatwick airport was highly commended for its close cooperation with organisations of persons with disabilities, including a local community accessibility forum of users with diverse visible and invisible disabilities. Judges also...
    Christakis Nicolaides, President of the Cyprus Confederation of Organizations of the Disabled , withr representatives from Gatwick Airport and ACi-Europe
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  • Visit: International Disability Alliance's Chair visits Brussels

    24.06.2019 Ana Lucía Arellano, Chair of the International Disability Alliance (IDA), visited Brussels from the 31st of May to the 4th of June. The objective of her visit was to strengthen IDA’s cooperation with EDF and its members, and engage in various bilateral meetings. On the 31st of May, Ms Arellano learnt more about EDF’s work during its executive committee meeting where internal matters were discussed. A very fruitful exchange took place during a lunch meeting with EDF Executive Committee and the EDF Secretariat. Ms Arellano later had a bilateral meeting with EDF president Yannis Vardakastanis....
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  • Conference: “Equal recognition before the law must become a reality”

    The 12th session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) took place from the 10th to the 13th of June 2019 at the UN Headquarters in New York and had the theme “Ensuring inclusion of persons with disabilities in a changing world”. You can view the plenary session and all of the COSP12 events here. ‘Equal recognition before the law must become a reality. If democracy is not for all, inclusion cannot be achieved!’ were the chosen words of our president Yannis Vardakastannis at the opening of COSP12 Here is a selection of EDF’s...
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  • Parliament and Council co-sign the Work-Life Balance Directive

    20.06.2019 On 13 June the Council of the EU’s Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council (EPSCO) adopted the Directive on work-life balance. On the 20th of June, the European Parliament and the Council are co-signing the Directive. It is expected that the Directive will be published in the Official Journal of the EU in the next 3-5 weeks. The Directive will enter into force 21 days after its publication in the Official Journal. Pushing for effective transposition NGOs are now focusing on ensuring a strong implementation of the Directive in the Member States. EDF has joined a...
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  • Successful contribution of EDF to the European Development Days (EDD)

    20.06.2019 European Development Days (EDD), organised by the European Commission took place in Brussels on the 18th and 19th of June. The aim of the conference is to bring the development community together each year to share ideas and experiences in ways that inspire new partnerships and innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. It is one of Europe’s biggest development conferences and it includes a participatory programme, with 745 exhibitions, 860 sessions and around 66 500 participants. The overarching title for this year was “Addressing inequalities: building a world which...
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  • Conference: Smart Travel - Partnership and technology making European Travel more accessible

    01.06.2019 What was the meeting about? This conference explored two main ideas regarding accessible travel that creates a more sustainable Europe. First it aimed to discuss how transport providers work with people with disabilities and their organizations to make their services more accessible as well as areas of improvement. Secondly, it asked what opportunities are offered by digitalisation to make travel more accessible for persons with disabilities. The conference identified future trends, risks and opportunities and also laid the basis for future cooperation between the disability movement,...
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  • Our analysis of the European Accessibility Act

    07.06.2019 The European Accessibility Act was published today in the Offical Journal of the EU (read it in your language). Now starts the transposition period (3 years) when national governments need to "translate" the Act into national law. To help with this, we publish today our analysis of the Act. Read the full analysis (Word) Deutsche version (Word) The Act The European Accessibility Act is a landmark agreement reached after decade-long campaigning by the European disability movement. The Act will set new EU-wide minimum accessibility requirements for a limited range of products and services. The...
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  • European Semester - what are Commission's recommendations on disability?

    06.06.2019 On the 5th June, the European Commission released its Country Specific Recommendations to all 28 Member States as part of the European Semester process. The European Semester is a cycle of primarily economic and fiscal policy coordination within the EU, although it has recently begun to focus on social policy too. Its focus is on the 6-month period from the beginning of each year, hence its name - the 'semester'.  A key part of this process is the release of the Country Specific Recommendations, outlining the European Commission’s view of what Member States must do better. So, how successful...
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