Soufiane El Amrani talks about self-advocacy, and deinstitutionalisation.
Self-Advocacy means standing up for your own rights and making sure your voice is heard.
As a person with intellectual disabilities you have the right to start a self-advocacy group.
It is important that people with intellectual disabilities get proper support so they can join self-advocacy groups and talk about what matters to them.
Inclusion Europe have a group called the European Platform of Self-Advocates.
The group is run by self-advocates from different countries.
They organise conferences called Hear our Voices!
They organize trainings for people with intellectual disabilities.
And there is an easy-to-read magazine with news for self-advocates. It is called Europe for us and it is available in 7 languages.
Right to decide, and to be included
All people with intellectual disabilities have the right to make decisions about their lives.
Inclusion Europe wants people with intellectual disabilities to live in the community like everyone else.
Living in the community means having friends and family, being a colleague at work, being good at something.
There should not be any people with intellectual disabilities segregated in institutions anymore.
All people with intellectual disabilities want is to have a normal life like others.
All segregated institutions should be closed and all people with intellectual disabilities should live in the community.
It is important to give people living in institutions good information and support about transition to community.
Good information is important so they can make a decision about their life.
Easy to read information is a good way of helping with that.
Proper support for people moving out of institutions
It is also important to support self-advocacy and peer-to-peer activities.
This can be done by having a person who moved from institution to community to come and talk to those living in an institution.
Or to support people who live in institutions in joining self-advocacy groups and organisations.
Supporting people to move out of institutions means helping them to find friends and colleagues.
Here is a quote from the chair of the European Platform of Self-Advocates which sums it up:
“We should not just build new houses.
We need to build an inclusive society”
There are subtitles in Czech, English.
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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