By Board Member Vera Bonvalot
We all know that EDF undertakes proactive, own initiative efforts that benefit Europeans with disabilities and in which members actively participate.But some of us are the living example that EDF also comes to members’ help.
This is a story from Portugal:
- The Portuguese Institute of Statistics had decided to remove all questions on disability from the next Census (2021). Which means that in Portugal we would not have any comprehensive data on disability anymore.
- We asked EDF for help. We asked them to draft a letter to explain the damage that removing questions on disability would cause to the disability community in Portugal, Europe and the world.
- EDF sent us a draft letter, that we approved and then they themselves sent it to the Institute for the Census and other decision makers (such as our secretary of state for inclusion of persons with disabilities)
- It had a great impact. The Institute back-pedalled and included the questions on the next census.
Of course, that national representatives had also sent letters and protested but I am sure that the letter of EDF had a decisive impact. Proof of it is that the Institute wrote directly to EDF to inform them of the positive outcome.
I am very grateful to EDF and I really believe that it’s important to share this story, as we should always cooperate with EDF but also keep in mind that, as a European organisation, they can have a very persuasive influence.
It was a good example of a simple cooperation between EDF and its members that had a very positive outcome. Thank you EDF for the quick and efficient action.