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Discussion on the next EU Disability Strategy at the European Parliament

18 December 2019

On Tuesday 17 December 2019, MEPs Rosa Estaràs Ferragut (Spain), Cindy Franssen (Belgium), Ádám Kósa (Hungarian), Stelios Kympouropoulos (Greece), on behalf of the EPP political group, tabled an oral question to Commissioner Helena Dalli, responsible for Equality, on the post-2020 EU disability strategy. 

We would like to thank the MEPs for tabling the oral question and launching a discussion on the next EU Disability Strategy (EDS). Several MEPs from all political groups took the floor during the debate and all stressed the importance and the need to have another EDS. EDS is the main instrument of the European Union to ensure the full implementation of the UN CRPD.

MEP Stelios Kympouropoulos mentioned that “We are not simply speaking about money, we are talking about human lives that have been destroyed, people that are unable to live full lives. It is important that human rights are respected for all citizens.”MEP Chrysoula Zacharopoulou (Renew Europe, France) highlighted the double discrimination faced by women with disabilities, while MEP Katrin Langensiepen (Greens/EFA, Germany) stressed that “everyday in the EU there are infringement of the human rights of persons with disabilities,we need to continue the current disability strategy” and the next strategy will need to ensure the protection of sexual and reproductive rights of persons with disabilities. MEP Cindy Franssen reminded that we will have full society only when we will reach integration of all citizens in all areas. 

Unfortunately, Commissioner Dalli didn’t commit to a next EDS. The Commission will have first to finalise the evaluation of the current EDS before potentially launching the next one. The Commissioner mentioned that the next strategy will have to take into account the new challenges affecting persons with disabilities, inclusive education and personal assistance and ensure the full implementation of the European Accessibility Act.

For more information

Link to the oral question

Link to the discussion from the plenary session

MEP Stelios Kympouropoulos 

MEP Rosa Estaràs Ferragut 

MEP Cindy Franssen

MEP Ádám Kósa