As a party to the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities, the EU has a Framework that promotes, protects and monitors the implementation of the Convention in matters of EU competence:
- EU legislation and policy: non-discrimination, passengers' rights, EU funding...
- EU public administration: personnel selection, access to documents...
It complements national monitoring mechanisms, which are the main bodies responsible for promoting, protecting and monitoring the UN Convention in EU countries.
Who are the members?
The Framework is composed of:
- The European Parliament
- The European Ombudsman
- The EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA)
- The European Disability Forum (EDF)
What do members do?
According to their respective competences and mandates, members contribute collectively to the:
of the UN Convention.
How does it work in practice?
Members share information and take account of each other’s activities. They agree on a work programme that can include activities implemented by several members together or by the Framework as a whole.
The Chair of the Framework is appointed for two years and is subject to a rotation system. The Chair promotes the principle of collegiality which is inherent to the Framework's working methods. The EDF is the Chair for 2013-2015.
The Framework Secretariat, also appointed for two years, coordinates the organisation and preparation of meetings. The Commission is the Secretariat for 2013-2015.
- Operational provisions (roles of the Chair and Secretariat, working methods)
The Framework meets at least twice a year. Decisions are taken by consensus.
The Framework complements national monitoring mechanisms in EU Member States and works to enhance synergies with them.
These mechanisms are responsible for promoting, protecting and monitoring the implementation of the UN Convention at national level in the countries that have ratified the Convention.
They can take various forms:
- national equality bodies,
- National Human Rights Institutions,
- monitoring committees with the participation of representatives of organisations concerned with the rights of persons with disabilities.
These bodies bear the main responsibility for promoting, protecting and monitoring the UN Convention in EU Member States.
Some of the monitoring mechanisms cooperate at EU level:
- The Working Group on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities of the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions;
- Equinet, the European Network of Equality Bodies, brings together more than 40 organisations from more than 30 countries empowered to combat discrimination across a range of grounds including disability;
- The European Network of Ombudsmen consists of over 95 offices in more than 30 European countries. Some of its members act as monitoring bodies for the UN Convention.