Online meeting of the Disability Intergroup “Impact of COVID 19 outbreak to persons with disabilities”

On April 30th the Disability Intergroup, with the support of its secretariat the European Disability Forum, organised an online meeting with the participation of the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) belonging to the Disability Intergroup Bureau, European Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli as well as several EDF members. This online meeting was open to the public and 405 people registered to it.

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Summary

This webinar was conducted by Catherine Naugthon, EDF Director and was supported by Raquel Riaza, Events and Administration Officer and by other colleagues from EDF‘s team. The webinar was accessible for persons with disabilities providing live captioning and international sign language interpretation. It was recorded and it will be available on the Disability Intergroup website.

Welcome remarks were given by MEP Adam Kosa co-chair of the Intergroup and MEP Brando Benifei, vice-chair after him.

Yannis Vardakastanis, EDF President also gave an opening speech

Ana Peláez Narváez, EDF Vice-President from Spain, described some human rights violations happening within the EU during the COVID-19 outbreak, including the particular situation of women and girls with disabilities during the pandemic.

Luisa Bosiso Fazzi, EDF Board Member from Italy, spoke about the effects on support services for persons with disabilities during the pandemic.

Thorkild Olesen, EDF Board Member from Denmark, explained the role of disability organisations and their advocacy to governments.

Albert Prévos, EDF Executive Committee member from France, stated the impact of lockdown measures on persons with disabilities.

Dovilė Juodkaitė, EDF Board Member from Lithuania, explained the economic implications and the main concerns for organisations of persons with disabilities in the post COVID-19 period.

Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli detailed the EU response to tackle this health and social crisis.

MEP Dragos Pislaru gave an overview on the role of the European Parliament and the measures agreed to deal with COVID-19 at the European level.

Then, there was a session of short interventions from several MEPs: Ms Anne Sophie Pelletier, Ms Radka Maxová, Ms Mónica González, Mr Stelios Kympouropoulos, Ms Katrin Langensiepen, Ms Rosa Estaras, Ms Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, and Ms Marianne Vind.

MEP Jose Gusmao summarised briefly some action proposals from the Parliament concerning specific issues for persons with disabilities.

Finally, President Yannis Vardakastanis and MEP Tilly Metz gave some closing remarks and conclusions of this meeting.

There was no much time for questions or discussion but the EDF will answer to all questions asked through the question box in the report of the meeting which will be published on the website of the Disability Intergroup.

 

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