“It feels good to work together with a group of fantastic people”

László Bercse is the new chair of the EPSA steering group. We asked László about how he got to know EPSA and about his plans.

“It feels good to work together with a group of fantastic people”

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László Bercse is from Hungary.

He is the new chair
of the EPSA steering group
and vice-president of Inclusion Europe.

He was elected at the General Meeting of EPSA in June.

We asked László about how he got to know EPSA
and about his plans for the future.


When did you join the EPSA steering group?

My organisation, ÉFOÉSZ, has been a member of EPSA
for a long time.

I knew some other self-advocates from EPSA.

I got to know them from other events of Inclusion Europe.

But I only met the whole EPSA Steering Group in 2017, in Brussels.

I took part in one of their meetings.

At that meeting, we talked about the goals of EPSA
for the next years.

I got elected to the Steering Group at the
Europe in Action conference in 2017, in Prague.

What have you learned at EPSA so far?

I have learned how to work in a team.

It feels good to work together with a group of fantastic people
for our goals.

I can also learn a lot from other self-advocates working with EPSA.

I learned a lot of new things
at the Europe in Action conference this June in Vilnius.

For example, I heard about self-advocates from Inclusion Ireland.

They help their country find out how far they have come with deinstitutionalisation.

They do research to find out if people get the right support
to live independently.

That is something we should do in Hungary as well.

Why did you want to become EPSA chair?

I like challenges a lot!

I wanted to see how I can lead such a good team.

I have always enjoyed the work with EPSA.

I want to continue learning from others
and sharing my own experience.

As chair I have even more possibilities. For example, to

  • tell politicians and other people who make important decisions in Europe how they can do more
    for people with intellectual disabilities
  • strengthen the international self-advocacy movement
  • speak up for Hungarian people with intellectual disabilities

at European level

What are the things you want to work on?

I have many goals as EPSA chair.

I would like us to get closer to reaching EPSA’s goals.

This would mean that all people with intellectual disabilities can


We also want guardianship to end.


Most countries in Europe have signed the UN CRPD.

It is very important to tell countries
to follow the UN CRPD.

The UN CRPD talks about the rights of people with disabilities.

Countries need to make sure
that people with disabilities get these rights.

They should better support people with intellectual disabilities
so they can be members of their community like everyone else.

Anything else you would like to add?

It is a great honour for me to be the new EPSA chair.

I have found new colleagues in EPSA.

And I have also found new friends.

I will try my best to achieve our goals.

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.

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