EU framework renews its UN Disability Convention commitments to promote the rights of people with disabilities

Members of the EU’s monitoring Framework for the UN Disability Convention met today in Brussels at a high-level meeting and renewed their commitment to promote, protect and monitor the rights of people with disabilities in the EU. This commitment is part of the EU’s obligations following its accession to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

FRA’s commitment to the EU Framework is rooted in ensuring that people with disabilities are able to benefit from the full and correct implementation of the CRPD,” said FRA Director Morten Kjaerum. “From developing indicators and benchmarks, to carrying out comparative legal and social research, FRA provides the independent data and analysis that can support the monitoring of the implementation of the CRPD by the EU. Making CRPD principles a reality also means raising awareness of the rights of people with disabilities, which is why FRA works closely with policy makers and civil society to promote the convention.”

The EU decided in 2010 for the first time to accede to a core UN human rights convention, the CRPD. In 2012, the Council of the EU put in place the EU Framework to promote, protect and monitor the implementation of the CRPD as required by the convention. The Framework’s activities cover areas of EU competence which includes EU legislation and policies as well as the EU’s public administration such as recruitment and access to documents.

Building on the work of the EU Framework so far, on 4 March representatives of the framework members met to underline their commitment to the Framework and endorse the work plan for 2015-2016. The meeting comes ahead of the review of the EU’s progress in implementing the convention by the CPRD expert committee later this year.

During the meeting, the political leadership of the EU Framework:

  • Reaffirmed their commitment to promote, protect and monitor the CRPD in the EU;
  • Reiterated the commitment of each member to contribute to the Framework within their responsibilities and functions, in particular by implementing the Framework work plan for 2015-2016; 
  • Confirmed their willingness actively to participate in the review of the EU by the CRPD expert committee and to contribute to the follow up of the review.

The framework members (and meeting representatives) include:

  • European Parliament (MEPs Ádám Kósa, Soledad Cabezón Ruiz and Helga Stevens) 
  • European Ombudsman (Aidan O'Sullivan)
  • European Commission (Employment Social Affairs Inclusion Director-General Michel Servoz)
  • EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) (FRA Director Morten Kjaerum)
  • European Disability Forum (EDF Vice President Gunta Anca)