Today, 2 December 2015, the European Commission has finally released the European Accessibility Act.
The European Accessibility Act, which takes the form of a Directive, proposes to make goods and services accessible to ensure a full inclusion for all persons in the internal market in the EU. This includes digital services for example computers, telephones, TV, transport and banking services, online shopping.
The European Accessibility Act is linked to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which the EU and 25 of its Member States have ratified. The idea is that the Act will make the EU’s internal market more accessible for all persons in order to make it more coherent, to make sure that when the Member States is implementing the Convention, there are not different ways on doing this which could cause barriers for people to use goods and services and for companies when selling their products.
The European Accessibility Act is an important legislation has been long awaited for. Earlier this year, when the EU was up for review by the CRPD Committee, the Committee commented in their recommendation to the EU that the European Accessibility Act should be released as soon as possible. EUD are very happy that Commissioner Thyssen and the European Commission has fulfilled its promised to release the Act this year.
More detailed information on what the Act includes and what it will mean to deaf persons will come later.