On Thursday, the 12 December, representatives of the European Disability Forum met with Commissioner for Equality, Helena Dalli. Commissioner Dalli took office at the beginning of December.
Our delegation stressed the importance to achieve equal rights for persons with disabilities across the world, including over 100 million persons with disabilities living in the EU. We briefed the Commissioner on the priorities of the disability movement, including:
- Moving the European Commission’s focal point on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to the Secretariat-General of the Commission and significantly increase both its human and financial resources
- Committing to a strong European Disability Rights Agenda 2020-2030.
- Ensuring the rights of women and girls with disabilities are fully included in the new Gender Equality strategy of the European Commission;
Yannis Vardakastanis, President of the European Disability Forum stated
We are happy to have a Commissioner for Equality in charge of disability rights. Now, the European Commission needs to reinforce this by moving the unit in charge of disability issues away from the Directorate-General for Employment and to a more fitting Directorate-General.
Helena Dalli, Commissioner for Equality said:
Today, we exchanged about the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, about disability mainstreaming in EU policies and about anti-discrimination legislation during our constructive meeting. I look forward to working closely with the European Disability Forum.