Deadline for public consultation extended.

SW – 10/2019

In July, the European Commission launched a public consultation on the European Disability Strategy. Its aim is to give stakeholders the opportunity to comment on the measures and initiatives taken at European level since 2010 to implement the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) (see article Aug 2019).

The Commission has now extended the deadline for participating in the consultation. People with disabilities and their families, organisations representing people with disabilities, non-governmental organisations and all interested citizens can now take part in the consultation until 13 November 2019, thereby influencing how policy for people with disabilities can be improved and better implemented in the future.

The German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV) also participated in the consultation, which aims not only to evaluate what has already been achieved, but also which factors have restricted the strategy’s implementation. The DGUV believes that a lack of political commitment and limited public awareness have been inhibiting factors. It also refers to its strategy paper ‘UN-BRK 2025’, which the DGUV has published with the aim of further promoting the overarching goals of inclusion, participation and awareness-raising. Following the principle of ‘Inclusion is not an exception, it is the rule’, the goal of the strategy paper is to embed the UNCRPD as a permanent managerial and cross-sectional task in all areas of statutory accident insurance.

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is currently preparing an own-initiative opinion on the next EU Strategy 2020-2030. At a hearing on 21 October 2019, representatives of the European Parliament, the Commission, the Finnish Presidency of the Council, the European Ombudsman and the European Fundamental Rights Agency, as well as social partners and stakeholders, exchanged views with rapporteur Ioannis Vardakastanis on shaping the EU agenda for disability rights 2020-2030.