Celebration of the 50th Anniversary - Address by Marjan Kroflic

European Year of People with Disabilities - EYPD - 2003

FIMITIC Events in Rome Italy April 3, 2003

Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of FIMITIC at Campidoglio, Promoteca hall

Address by Marjan Kroflic, Vice-President, FIMITIC

Mister Chairman,

honoured guests,

Ladies and Gentleman,

dear friends,        

first of all I have to inform you that the FIMITIC President Maria-Lidija Stiglic due to very sudden illness unfortunately does not have the possibility to be with us in Rome and to speak to you today.

My special greetings and a warm welcome to all participants  from Albania, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Italy, Hungary, Ireland, Lichtenstein, Poland, Romania, Slovac Republic, Slovenia, Spain and Switzerland!

Delegates from Belarus, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Estonia, Latvia, PSON Poland and Portugal are absent because of financial restrictions or for health reasons.

It´s a pleasure to see here the representatives of the International Institutions, the Council of Europe and the European Commission.

Allow me to address some words to you in my function as  FIMITIC Vice-president on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of FIMITIC.

Disabled people belonging to the  FIMITIC member organizations form a very diverse group of people and are faced with numerous different barriers as to their inclusion into society.

The exclusion from society is understood by ourselves as a form of discrimination and  for us, the disabled citizens, unacceptable. We want to have equal opportunities on the fields of education and employment and so to be equal workers, consumers and tax payers. We want to be independent and not to be burden to society. We do not want to be excluded from the decision making processes neither on local nor on national level.

FIMITIC, as a Non-Governmental human rights umbrella federation of representative national organizations throughout Europe since its existence, marking 50 years now, was focusing its activities on ensuring equalization of opportunities and full participation of persons with disabilities in society.

FIMITIC´s way of achieving this goal is also done by active cooperation with International Institutions in the frame of its advisory status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council, with the Council of Europe and the Special List of the International Labour Office.

FIMITIC is a full member of the European Disability Forum and supports with active voice the EDF  campaigns how to be stronger together in building a Social Europe.

The main tasks of FIMITIC remain

Ø Exchange of information about positive and negative examples in the field of disability in different countries

Ø Supporting member organizations to draw the attention of governments on human rights and equal opportunities to improve the life of disabled citizens

Ø  Demonstrating how to build the social dialogue in partnership for a society for all.

We are aware that an active international organization of persons with physical disability needs a close cooperation with all European Institutions, especially during the European Year of People with Disabilities 2003.

Together with the European Disability Forum we are stronger and we can reach more in building a social future Europe.

FIMITIC can only be effective and successful, if all members are willing to actively support it with their knowledge and experience and to thus contribute to our common aim –  to create a better “Society for all”.

We all know that a society good for disabled people is a better society for all. Let us use our insight to convince others, first of all the decision-makers!

On the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of FIMITIC on behalf of its President Marija Lidija Stiglic, in the name of its Board and in my name I wish you all much success and strength also in future for your struggle to reach a society good for all.

Thank you for your attention!

Thanks to the Rome Municipality for the reception given by Mrs. Illeana Argentin, the responsible person in charge of the policy for disabled people.

Thanks to the FIMITIC´s Italian Member Association ANMIC for its hospitality and for organizing this celebration here in Rome, the Eternal City.

Special thanks to National President Giovanni Pagano, his Board and  co-workers, and to co-organiser Carlo Calvani.