Witnessing history

Witnessing history
Mi Voto Cuenta. Picture of the website www.mivotocuenta.es.

My vote counts. Picture of the website www.mivotocuenta.es.

A blog post by Milan Šveřepa, director of Inclusion Europe, at the occasion of the Spanish parliament’s vote to restore the right to vote for people under guardianship


I can still picture it vividly.
We were in Glasgow for the annual meeting of the directors of our member organisations.
We talked about campaigning and working together accross organisations and countries.

Enrique Galván, director of Plena inclusión, told us about Mara and her and her family’s fight to get her right to vote back.
There was no going back from there.

We asked our members to share their stories and experiences campaigning for the right to vote.
And as they do, they provided Plena inclusión with all they could.

Inclusion Europe itself got on the story.
We talked about it to anyone who would listen.

And we watched with growing anticipation as the campaign by Plena inclusión and other organisations started to gain traction.
But you should never get your hopes too high, surely?
Never be too optimistic? Especially when it comes to dealing with such matters as politics 😉
That is what I was thinking.

How wrong I was – and how happy I am for that.
Because when the moment came, it was a straightforward affair.
ALL votes for, zero against, zero abstained.

And here we are today:
Witnessing a historic moment for people with intellectual disabilities and their families in Spain.
100,000 people finally get to exercise the right that should have never been taken from them in the first place.

A victory for people with intellectual disabilities and their families.
A victory for Plena inclusión and their allies.
A victory for Spain and for democracy.

I am proud Inclusion Europe could play its small part on the way to this day.
I hope all the people will use their newly-gained voice and raise it in the upcoming European elections.

And I hope the countries that still deny people their right to vote take note!