European Commission to propose a disability specific directive

Commissioner Spidla officially stated at the European Parliament Employment and Social Affairs Committee meeting on 2nd April that the European Commission would propose non discrimination legislation on the ground of disability.

According to the Dutch national press agency (ENA), Spidla’s spokesperson informed that according the results of a European Commission led study, non-discrimination legislation based on disability was the most urgent. He added that this kind of legislation would have the most chances to have the support from Member States. This statement was confirmed by the Commissioner’s cabinet.

Despite this statement, a proposal for non discrimination legislation beyond employment still needs to be adopted by the College of Commissioners to be presented to the European Parliament and Council of Ministers. The FIMITIC members are encouraged to continue the campaign to achieve a disability specific directive.

The members are invited to send letters to their competent Ministers, to the Commissioners from their country, as well as to Members of the European Parliament from their country to seek their support on a Disability specific non-discrimination legislation.

The FIMITIC members area asked to seek the support of their governments on a Disability Specific Directive

It is very important that members act quickly to ensure that enough support is provided from national authorities in the preparation of the legislative proposal foreseen to be presented by June.

Role of FIMITIC members at EU and national level

In our campaign to lobby for a disability specific directive, FIMITIC members have a crucial role to play:

  • Members are encouraged to obtain meetings with the national Head of Government or Social Affairs Minister to officially present the Directive.
  • Members are strongly encouraged to translate the proposal for a Disability Specific Directive in their own language and to disseminate it as widely as possible among their members and allies
  • Members are encouraged to contact the members of the European Parliament, in order to influence their position on the Directive, and inviting them to participate at the hearing that EDF will organise together with the Disability Intergroup of the European Parliament on 14 May 2008 in Brussels from 1:00 to 3:00 pm at the EP.
  • All meetings and events should be used as an opportunity for national disability demonstrations and publicity of the Directive proposal.
  • FIMITIC and the European partner NGOs are in particular encouraged to adopt a coordinated strategy among all disability NGOs, benefiting from their extensive network of allies and capacity to exert influence. They will inform their target groups on the relevant aspect s of the Directive and seek for their full support. They are encouraged to approach their allies in the EU institutions and other networks to promote this initiative.