Background

FRA's disability work is framed by the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD): the Convention takes a rights-based approach to disability.

The Convention recognises that disability results from the interaction between persons with impairments and attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinders their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others. Therefore society has an obligation to adapt to facilitate the full participation of people with disabilities. People with disabilities are "individuals" with rights, not objects of charity.

The convention was written with and by people with disabilities, in line with the disability movement's slogan: "Nothing about us without us". This philosophy guides FRA's work related to disability rights.

How FRA supports disability rights

FRA carries out legal and social research and analysis of key fundamental rights issues. The legal research compares the EU’s legal provisions and measures. Social research can be either quantitative or qualitative. For example, for the project on the rights of people with intellectual disabilities and people with mental health problems, FRA conducted in-depth interviews with people with disabilities and also asked then to document their everyday lives through "photo voice". Learn more about photo voice.

Such research can also involve discussions in focus groups bringing together people with disabilities and those who form an important part of their lives, such as carers, personal assistants and service providers.

FRA is also a member of the EU’s monitoring framework for 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. The other framework members include, the European Parliament, the European Ombudsman, the European Commission and the European Disability Forum

For more on FRA's work on disability rights contact: disability@fra.europa.eu

FRA's partners working on disability rights

FRA works with many partners including representative organisations of persons with disabilities. Below is the list of some of the main organisations and institutions with whom the FRA regularly cooperates.