People with Disabilities
Article 26 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights recognises the right of persons with disabilities to “benefit from measures designed to ensure their independence, social and occupational integration and participation in the life of the community”. People with disabilities today represent over 15% of the EU population.
Persons with disabilities have the same rights than any other citizen in Europe. In order to ensure their enjoyment of these rights, the European Union recognises that particular attention needs to be focused on the manifold issues concerning disabled persons. The major aim should be to enable them to fulfil the roles and responsibilities of citizenship and have the same individual choices and control over their life as non disabled people. Action should be guided by the necessity to ensure access, accessibility and inclusion on equal terms as others. In this context, access to long-term care and support services are high priorities. Factors to consider also include:, compensating disabilities, providing habilitation and rehabilitation, minimising the economic and social consequences of disabilities, health inequalities. Reducing social exclusion, removing obstacles and barriers, facilitating mobility and exploiting information technology are major objectives in this field.