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Inaki Irazabalbeitia

Former MEP, Aralar

Irazabalbeitia impulses a Written Declaration on the rights of persons with disabilities

Jan 27, 2014

An important part European citizens has disabilities. They want neither to be excluded for their participation in social life nor to be kept in institutions. For having a fulfilling life they need personalised help.

Written Declarations are one of the means we MEP have to impulse initiatives in the EP. A Written Declaration is a text of a maximum of 200 words relating exclusively on a matter falling within the competence of the European Union. They do not, however, bind Parliament, that is, they cannot be considered as an act of the Parliament representing its position, but only those of its authors and signatories. To initiate a WD you need the signature of al least 10 MEPs from 3 different groups. There is a period of three mounts to gather the signature of half of the MEPs in order to get it approved.

I am very grateful to my colleague who help me to start the process: Marisa Matias (GUE/NGL), Antolín Sánchez Presedo (S&D), Izaskun Bilbao Barandica (ALDE), Mark Demesmaeker (Verts/ALE), Jill Evans (Verts/ALE), François Alfonsi (Verts/ALE), Martina Anderson (GUE/NGL), Marie-Thérèse Sanchez-Schmid (PPE) and Nikos Chrysogelos (Verts/ALE)

This is the WD:

1.      In the European Union (EU) 10 % of people have a moderate disability and 4.5 % severe disabilities. 75 % of those who depend on personal support for their participation in economic, social and cultural life are excluded from the mainstream of society. They are discriminated against because of their functional diversity (people discriminated against on grounds of functional diversity – PDFD).

2.      The 2006 UN Convention establishes the right to personal assistance for independent living (Section 19).

3.      A public system of personal assistance for people discriminated against because of their functional diversity provides a right, supports the user properly, efficiently and sustainably and saves 30 % of the cost of residential care.

4.      Any breach of dignity and human rights is inexcusable.

5.      The Commission is hence called upon to promote independent living for PDFD, with standards of personal care and protection of social rights based on their needs, abilities and aspirations as EU citizens.

6.      This declaration, together with the names of the signatories, is forwarded to the Commission.