EU Budget Post-2020
A budget that should leave no-one behind

The European Commission published its proposal of a Multiannual Financial Framework for the period 2021-2027 on May 2nd, 2018.  Following the general budget outline, in June a range of regulations were published which detail the proposals for individual programmes in the budget.

The EU budget is crucially important for persons with disabilities in Europe. It is an essential tool that many EU Member States use to promote social inclusion in their country. It also has an important component of support for development and humanitarian aid for third countries.

In this page, we will highlight the budget proposals and headings that will most impact persons with disabilities.

Overview of the EU Budget proposal

The European Commission published its proposal of a Multiannual Financial Framework for the period 2021-2027 on May 2nd, 2018.

Following the general budget outline, in June a range of regulations was published which detail the proposals for individual programmes in the budget.

The total budget proposal amounts to 1.135 billion, which correspond to the 1.11% of Gross National Income of every EU member state.

The Post-2020 budget proposal presents some differences with the current budget, mainly:

  • It sets new priorities and introduces new funds e.g. for boarder management, security, defense, structural reforms; 
  • It reduces budgeted amount for some headings. For example, cohesion policy which is 7% lower compared to the current envelop for the period 2014-2020.
  • Reduces the number of funding programmes merging some of them into one. For example, the European Social Fund+ includes the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived, the programme for Employment and social innovation includes the Health Programme
  • requires a higher amount of national contribution from each Member State.

Budget headings

The budget is divided into eight different headings:

  1. Single Market, Innovation and Digital
  2. Cohesion & Values
  3. Natural Resources and environment
  4. Migration & environment
  5. Security & Defence
  6. Neighbourhood & the world
  7. European Public Administration
  8. Instruments outside the MFF Ceiling – these are specific instruments agreed outside the budget proposed for the EU Budget.

The eight headings represent the policy objectives to which all EU investments should contribute.

You can find all the proposal texts here

The EU Budget and the UN CRPD

The European Union and all of its member states have ratified the UN Convention on the Right of Persons with Disabilities. Therefore, all aspects of the budget proposals need to ensure that EU funds are not creating new barriers for persons with disabilities (for example using EU funds in Europe or outside Europe to build inaccessible public infrastructure, or using EU funds to build institutions for persons with disabilities).

We will advocate to:

  • Ensure all safeguards are in place to prevent this, and that proper monitoring takes place at both the EU and the national level, with the involvement of representative organisations of persons with disabilities.

  • We will work with our partners to ensure a maximum amount of EU funds is dedicated to Social Cohesion and Social Inclusion in Europe.

Cohesion and Values is the heading that encompasses most of the main funding instruments for social inclusion, education, employment and accessibility for persons with disabilities, gender equality and non-discrimination and for the financing of organisations of persons with disabilities in Europe, both European and national networks.

Our horizontal recommendations

All programmes of the next EU budget should incorporate the following principles:

Completely aligned with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and promoting human rights and women’s rights

The EU and all its member states have ratified the Convention – therefore this human rights convention should be referenced in every programme and actions should be aligned to the Convention. Actions should promote the implementation of the Convention, and no funds should be invested in actions which are contrary to the Convention (such as inaccessible infrastructure or segregating institutions for persons with disabilities).

Sustainable Development

The next EU budget must serve the implementation and monitoring of the Sustainable Development Goals. The EU budget must increase social inclusion and provide financial means to implement disability-inclusive SDGs, in Europe and in international cooperation. The use of European Funds must serve the fight against poverty so all persons with disabilities can access adequate, affordable and accessible services.


The EU budget should only be invested in fully accessible infrastructure and services so that persons with disabilities benefit from the funding. EU funds should not be used to invest in new barriers.

Independent living for persons with disabilities

No funding should be invested in segregation or institutionalised living arrangements for persons with disabilities. Resources should be invested in community support, accessible housing and transport, vocational training, employment, to promote independent living, inclusive education and making mainstream services accessible to persons with disabilities.

Social Inclusion

In each programme, whether it is employment, education, youth, gender equality, training, persons with disabilities need to be explicitly included with accessibility and reasonable accommodation guaranteed. Specific actions should be included to tackle poverty and promote inclusion of persons with disabilities. Mobility programmes should always include budget for support of persons with disabilities, such as budget for a personal assistant and other accommodations.

Promoting inclusive civic dialogue and partnership

Civil dialogue should be formally established and incorporated at each stage of policy and programming to ensure citizens voices are heard and policies and programmes reach and are inclusive of all people. Programmes should be implemented in partnership, including well resourced civil society partners.

Investment in organisations of persons with disabilities.

The EU budget must invest in building the capacity and meaningfully engaging with representative organisations of persons with disabilities.


In order to ensure that persons with disabilities are included data and indicators need to be included in each programme. Data should be disaggregated by age, gender and disability. Each entity which benefits from EU funds should report on how persons with disabilities were included.

International cooperation

The EU must keep its commitments to the UN CRPD by continuing including disability as a cross-cutting issue in the heading on international cooperation in the next MFF and the subsequent financial instruments, including the trust funds. Disability inclusion is a decisive cross-cutting element to achieve also the 2030’s Agenda’s objectives.

EDF work to promote an EU budget that leaves no one behind

We are taking several actions to ensure that the next EU Budget fully benefits persons with disabilities, including:

  • Analysing all aspects of the budget from the point of view of persons with disabilities
  • Develop common position of the European Disability Movement to outline our priorities and expectations in relation to EU funding.
  • Meeting with key EU decision makers to explain our priorities to them.
  • Cooperation with our partners. In this way we speak with a louder voice- we also ensure that wider civil society networks understand an incorporate the concerns of persons with disabilities.

We are paying special attention to 4 headings:

  1. Single Market, Innovation & Digital
  2. Cohesion & Values
  3. Migrations and border management
  4. Neighbourhood and the World

You can see our list of actions in our campaign page.

How EU Funds help persons with disability

Job coaching for young persons in Austria


My name is Selina Šisic and I am 16 years old. I live in Wels, a city in Upper Austria. I’ve studied in a school in Wels (it was the “Neue Mittelschule Wels 6”) and then I was in an agricultural college for another year. At my school in Wels there was a counseling offer called “Youth Coaching” (“Jugendcoaching”). Already at school I knew that I would like to work in an office.

The “Youth Coaching”, which is co-financed by the EU (European Social Fund +), helped me to find out the next steps concerning my job. Because of the Youth Coaching, I found out that I’d like to do a vocational training as an office worker. Then my youth coach informed a coach from another project called “Working Assistance for Youth” (“Arbeitsassistenz für Jugendliche”) about my wish. There, my working assistant helped me to prepare application documents and to find companies which offer vocational training.

Since 1st of October 2018, I am attending a vocational training as an office worker at the “Volkshilfe Arbeitswelt”. The vocational training is adapated, because of my disability (Editor’s note: Selina is a wheelchair user). Usually the vocational training lasts 3,5 year, but I can do it in 4,5 years and I get a special support for my schooling during this time (private tutoring). In my vocational training I have a coach from the “vocational training assistance” (“Berufsausbildungsassistenz”). In the office I get support from a personal assistant.

I like my job very much and I feel very well in my team.  I can rely on my colleagues. To attend this vocational training is very important for me and my life. I am happy, that I have got this opportunity.

Adapting new technologies to the needs of persons with intellectual disabilities

Cornelia Constantin – European project manager at Papillons Blancs d’Hazebrouck, North of France

Cornelia Constantin

I am the manager of a project co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund in the Hauts-de-France region of France, led by the association Papillons Blancs d’Hazebrouck.

The objective of the DOMO – Decide on my own – project is to make new technologies a lever for self-determination, inclusion in society, well-being and quality of life for people with intellectual disabilities.

Our approach aims to bridge the digital divide and allow the support and care sector to renew its practices to adapt to changes in society and the digital revolution.

The DOMO project focuses on the needs and expectations of the supported persons. It aims to promote the universal accessibility of new technologies by adapting them to the needs of people with intellectual disabilities.

The human dimension remains at the center of the model of support. I am very happy to participate in this human adventure with our partners, the IoT Innovation Center of Lille, the University of Mons, UDAPEI North, UDAPEI Pas-de-Calais and nine associations Papillons Blancs of the North and Pas-de-Calais.