Inclusion Europe at the European Commission for the European Day of Persons with Disabilities 2019

Read the special edition of our newsletter "Include" dedicated to the European Day of Persons with Disabilities 2019!

Inclusion Europe at the European Day of Persons with Disabilities 2019

On the occasion of the European Day of Persons with Disabilities, we published a special issue of our Include newsletter!

Read it here


  • Self-advocates’ demands
  • Interview about role of families and about education
  • Children with intellectual disabilities
  • Interview about political participation and accessibility

At the conference, many self-advocates and other activists for the rights of people with intellectual disabilities and their families spoke.

Here is a selection of quotes:


▶️ Pearl Lüthy from our member Insieme Schweiz/Suisse said: “I go with my friends to my local secondary school. I want to have a good job and earn enough money to live where I want, just like my friends. It’s that simple!”

▶️ Luminita Caldaras, our representative at the European Disability Forum‘s Women’s Committee raised the question how the EU wants to make sure “that the needs of women with disabilities are taken into account in the new European Disability Strategy.”

Our own Milan Šveřepa spoke at a panel and mentioned several points regarding the new Disability Strategy: It needs to

✔️ address the right to make decisions
✔️ set targets to end segregation
✔️ tackle violence against women with intellectual disabilities
✔️ recognise the role of families
✔️ be easy to understand

You can watch a Milan’s speech here (starting at 6:38:00)

▶️ Maureen Piggot explained: “When I was president of Inclusion Europe, self-advocates said: ‘We should be the last generation to grow up in large segregated institutions.’ A good start are the funding regulations that have been agreed. But it won’t happen unless we support families.”

▶️ Oscar Föllerer from our member Selbstvertretungszentrum Wien asked how the EU can help prevent that students with intellectual disabilities are put in segregated schools.

▶️ Andres Lavado from Aexpainba (part of our member Plena inclusión) noted the problems smaller organisations have: “We need people, staff and resources and we think that we shouldn’t be left out of the conversation on the European Disability Strategy.”

What we expect from the future European Disability Strategy

The European Disability Strategy should:

  1. Address the importance of the right to make decisions;
  2. Establish clear targets to end segregation;
  3. Address violence against women with intellectual disabilities;
  4. Recognise the role of families in fulfilling rights and providing support to their relatives with disabilities;
  5. Connect to peoples‘ experiences and be easier to understand.

Throughout the strategy, particular attention needs to be paid to:

  • Children with intellectual disabilities and their families;
  • Women with intellectual disabilities;
  • People with complex support needs and their families.

Read our the opinion in full

Access City Awards

At the Access City Awards, Évreux (France) won a special mention for their work on making their city accessible to people with hidden disabilities, for example through easy-to-read information and accessible information points. Congratulations!

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. 

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