The European Day of Persons with Disabilities
Usually, the International and European Days for Persons with Disabilities are celebrated at the same time on December 3, but this year Europe started with a 2-day conference already November 28-29. Funka was of course there.
The European Day for Persons with Disabilities is organized by the European Commission together with the umbrella organization for disability organizations in Europe; European Disablility Forum, EDF. The annual conference is part of the EU's work to promote mainstreaming of disability issues and raise awareness of the challenges that people with disabilities experience in their everyday lives.
It is a unique opportunity for politicians, experts, representatives of various organizations and individuals with disabilities to meet and discuss solutions to improve the conditions for all people's abilities. It is also an excellent meeting place for like-minded people, where we capture new ideas and discuss which topics are most prioritised. As in previous years, we made many new friends and potential partners and came home with a list of exciting potential research and innovation projects that we hope to be able to implement.
A long-term perspective
This year the conference program was particularly exciting as the focus was on the European Disability Strategy, which affects everything from legislation to research initiatives. The strategy for 2010-2020 has been out for public hearing and the results of this served as a basis for the interactions between policy makers and delegates. During the event, interesting ideas from other parts of the world were also presented and it was a lively debate about the expectations of future policies.
Marianne Thyssen, European Commissioner responsible for employment, social affairs, skills and labor mobility 2014-2019, received a warm thank you her active involvement in our field. The city of Warsaw was awarded the EU Access City Awards, a price focused on accessibility in the urban environment, for its inclusive approach and for making general improvements in a short time. Funka sends our congratulations!
The European Day for Persons with Disabilities is live-streamed and the videos are published online.