Empowerment of people with complex support needs – report

To show the importance of having the right to decide about one's own life, we made reports on various aspects of legal capacity. These aspects are aligned with our 5E's campaigns for full rights and inclusion strategy 2018-2022.

Empowerment of people with complex support needs - report

People with intellectual disabilities with complex support needs have a significant intellectual impairment and experience difficulties in communicating. They have these often in combination with other difficulties like physical and/or sensory impairments, specific health/ medical and mental health conditions or issues.

The support required to live a full life is described as complex because it can meet one or several of the following characteristics:

  • Diverse: Permanent assistance is needed in most aspects of life such as communication, decision-making, mobility, planning, emotional support, health and personal care;
  • Intense: 24/7 support; 1:1 assistance; requires good knowledge of the person who receives support, often built over time
  • Crucial: Life threatening safety concerns, specific health conditions, challenging self-harming behaviour.

Due to these characteristics, the support has to be person-centred and provided by supporters who have been specifically trained by families and others including the person’s former supporters to support the person, and to communicate in a competent
and respectful way.

Through this paper, Inclusion Europe reaffirms the need for the Inclusion movement, the authorities and the whole community to include people with complex support needs and their families, who are often the most excluded

  • Every life has value and must be respected
  • Everyone can flourish and increase/gain control over their lives
  • Everyone can contribute to the community
  • Every family has the right to an ordinary life

Read the full paper: Empowerment of people with complex support needs



Go further:


Our work brings the voice of people with intellectual disabilities and their families where decisions about their future are made.

This has always been incredibly important. It is even more so with the Covid pandemic drastic impact on their rights and lives.

Being visible and vocal on issues directly affecting millions of people requires your support. 

Become Inclusion Europe supporter and help us keep doing our work.