The European Parliament approved on a resolution on sign language and sign language interpreters
24 November 2016
On 7 July 2016, the European Parliament adopted a very important resolution based on a report by the Parliament about the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) with an overwhelming majority.
The UNCRPD being the only human rights treaty that has been ratified by a regional organisation - the European Union (EU) - next to almost of all of its Member States, the EU’s progress in implementing the Convention, by making sure its legislation fully complies with it, was reviewed in 2015.
The report drawn up by Helga Stevens, one of two deaf Members of the European Parliament (MEP), specifically looks at the concluding observations the UN committee issued to the EU in 2015, reviewing its report submitted in 2014. It makes recommendations on the observations that refer to policy areas where the EU has the competency to suggest disability-inclusive legislation, but also pays special attention to how the EU institutions implement the UNCRPD in their objective to act as a role model in this regard. On this basis, the resolution calls on the European Commission and the EU Council to fully implement the UN’s recommendations.
We very much welcome the adoption and the strong backing of this resolution and report by the European Parliament which shows that promoting the rights of persons with disabilities is a value widely shared within the European Parliament and demonstrates its dedication to work towards a more inclusive Europe for persons with disabilities.
This dedication is further highlighted by the fact that a very high number of parliamentary committees provided input to the report. This shows the importance of mainstreaming disability across all policy areas. Additionally, the text was drawn including the suggestions from disability organisations across Europe, including EUD, and thus respected the principle of participation of persons with disabilities and their organisations at all stages, as put forward by the UNCRPD.
The valuable recommendations made in the report will feed into the mid-term review of the European Disability Strategy 2010-2020, which is currently undertaken by the European Commission as well as further policy processes.
We would like to congratulate Helga Stevens for her hard work on this excellent report. We are looking forward to continuing our cooperation with the European Parliament, as well as its Disability Intergroup - an informal cross-party grouping of MEPs working together on disability issues, which was also strongly involved in providing input to this report – to advocate for a more inclusive Europe for its deaf and hard of hearing citizens.
You can read this report here + link once it the final adopted version is published
You can find EDF’s press release on this topic here: http://www.edf-feph.org/Page_Generale.asp?DocID=13855&thebloc=34466
The press release of the Disability Intergroup can be found here: http://us9.campaign-archive2.com/?u=865a5bbea1086c57a41cc876d&id=721855a881&e=[UNIQID]
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