Rights of persons with disabilities (The right to independent living)


The aim of this project is to provide evidence-based assistance and expertise to EU institutions and Member States when they take measures or formulate courses of action within their respective sphere of competence to fulfil the right of people with disabilities to live independently and to be included in the community as set out in Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

The project aims to develop and populate human rights indicators to enable the assessment of measures to promote the transition from institutional to community-based care.


The right to live independently and be included in the community is guaranteed by Article 19 of the CRPD and protected under EU law, in particular through the prohibition of discrimination on the grounds of disability (Article 21 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU) and the principle of integration of persons with disabilities (Article 26 of the Charter).

This right is integral to the realisation of many of the other rights enshrined in the CRPD, such as equality and non-discrimination, autonomy and liberty, legal capacity and freedom of movement. The centrality of the right to independent living to the effective implementation of the CRPD has been underlined by the priority assigned to this issue by the EU and its Member States.


The project will be divided into three stages, each providing focused legal and policy analysis on the situation with regard to the transition from institutional to community-based care across the EU:

  • Developing a typology of institutions in the EU and developing indicators on the right to independent living (Article 19 of the CRPD).
  • Research on legal and policy measures at the EU and national levels to promote independent living. This data collection will also help to populate the structure and process indicators identified in the first stage of the project.
  • Case studies to understand the drivers and barriers to the transition from institutional to community-based care at the local level. The data collected will also populate the process and outcome indicators on Article 19 of the CRPD.
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