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Realising the right of persons with disabilities to live independently and be included in the community requires implementing meaningful and sustainable deinstitutionalisation. FRA evidence shows that one crucial starting point is a strategy on or covering deinstitutionalisation. Previous FRA opinions call for disabled persons’ organisations to be closely involved in developing such policies.
All EU Member States should adopt deinstitutionalisation strategies. These strategies should be evidence based, drawing on a comprehensive needs-based mapping of the status of deinstitutionalisation. They should also have a sufficiently broad scope to cover the different sectors involved in the transition from institutional to community-based support. These include health, employment and housing, in addition to support services for persons with disabilities.
EU Member States should ensure that they actively involve persons with disabilities and their representative organisations throughout the design, implementation and evaluation of the strategy.
EU Member States’ deinstitutionalisation strategies should include specific targets with clear deadlines. Member States should also adequately finance the implementation of these strategies. FRA Opinion 3 EU Member States should ensure that independent bodies regularly review the implementation of deinstitutionalisation strategies. Member States should consider developing indicators to track progress during the lifetime of the strategy to highlight implementation gaps.
EU Member States should ensure that independent bodies regularly review the implementation of deinstitutionalisation strategies. Member States should consider developing indicators to track progress during the lifetime of the strategy to highlight implementation gaps.
Deinstitutionalisation in the spirit of the CRPD involves transforming support services for persons with disabilities, so that a range of individualised support in the community is available. This has major implications for the planning and delivery of such services. This report underlines that, regardless of the national approach to commissioning and administering community- based services, achieving deinstitutionalisation requires coordination between national, regional and local authorities, both within and across different sectors.
EU Member States should develop mechanisms to ensure effective coordination between relevant municipal, local, regional and national authorities. Member States should also facilitate the transfer of support services across different administrative sectors.
Deinstitutionalisation requires that the phasing out of institutional services be coupled with developing accessible support services in the community. This entails a cross-sectoral approach that integrates both specialised services for persons with disabilities and general services available to the local community as a whole. Deinstitutionalisation is also likely to require developing new and innovative support services that are adaptable to individual needs.
EU Member States should develop mechanisms to ensure effective coordination between relevant sectors involved in deinstitutionalisation, including housing, employment, health and social services.
Member States, and the European Commission when ESIF are involved, should ensure that newly developed community-based support services are financially and practically sustainable.