The European Disability Rights Strategy (EDRS or the Strategy) 2021 – 2030 was introduced by the European Commission (the Commission) in March 2021. The strategy outlined concrete actions that will aim at supporting the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities at the European level and continues building on the achievements from the previous European Disability Strategy 2010 – 2020. EDRS 2021 – 2030 foresees several objectives that will be achieved through so called flagship initiatives. Among other actions, for the first two years of the Strategy the European Commission has foreseen the delivery of three flagship initiatives.
The Strategy outlines that in 2021 the European Commission will establish the Disability Platform. It will replace the existing High Level Group on Disability and support the implementation of this Strategy as well as national disability strategies. It will bring together national UNCRPD focal points, organisations of persons with disabilities and the Commission.
Moreover, the Strategy outlines that in 2022 the Commission will launch a European resource centre AccessibleEU to increase coherence in accessibility policies and facilitate access to relevant knowledge. The Strategy highlights that this cooperation framework will bring together national authorities responsible for implementing and enforcing accessibility rules with experts and professionals from all areas of accessibility, to share good practices across sectors, to inspire policy development at national and EU level, as well as to develop tools and standards aiming to facilitate implementation of EU law.
Moreover, the Commission is committed to present a package to improve labour market outcomes of persons with disabilities, seeking cooperation with the European Network of Public Employment Services, social partners and organisations of persons with disabilities. The Strategy emphasises that the package will support Member States in the implementation of the relevant Employment Guidelines through the European Semester and will provide guidance and support mutual learning on strengthening capacities of employment and integration services, promoting hiring perspectives through affirmative action and combating stereotypes, ensuring reasonable accommodation, securing health and safety at work and vocational rehabilitation schemes in case of chronic diseases or accidents, exploring quality jobs in sheltered employment, and pathways to the open labour market.
Since the first year of the European Disability Rights Strategy (EDRS) 2021 – 2030 has already passed, EUD is organising a webinar during which the National Associations of the Deaf can be informed of the actions taken at the EU level to implement the Strategy and the flagship initiatives that are foreseen for 2022. This webinar is be available in International Sign and spoken English. The webinar also provide live captioning in English.