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4th European Parliament of Persons with Disabilities takes place in Brussels

Wednesday 06 December 2017

On 6 December more than 600 persons with disabilities from all over Europe including members of Alzheimer Europe’s Working Group of People with Dementia (EWGPWD) met at the 4th European Parliament of Persons with Disabilities (EPPD). The EPPD was co-organised by the European Disability Forum (EDF) and the European Parliament. The President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, and EDF President, Yannis Vardakastanis, opened the EPPD.

President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, stated: "Our commitment to improve the lives of persons with disabilities is founded in our values as Europeans, including our attachment to freedom, equality and inclusion of all individuals in society. These values have to be translated into concrete actions, to enable every person to live an independent life, and to make sure that our society empowers everyone."

EDF President, Yannis Vardakastanis, stated: “Today we show a European Parliament close to its citizens. The EPPD is another milestone in the dialogue between EU elected representatives and citizens with disabilities. Throughout all EDF existence, the European Parliament has always been a strong and vocal defender of the human rights of persons with disabilities. Over the last two legislatures, the European Parliament promoted and protected the rights of persons with disabilities during legislation negotiations on the right to equal access to the internet, to transport or to independent living, as well as on the structural funds – in line with the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD)”.

The EPPD gave European citizens with disabilities, both leaders and grass-root activists a unique opportunity to talk with Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and high level representatives of other EU institutions about their human rights. This year the topics under discussion were: the right to vote and participate in political and public life, the European Disability Strategy 2020-2030 and the European Union (EU) being a global leader on inclusive Sustainable Development.

During the EPPD, a manifesto on European elections 2019, a resolution on the next European Disability Strategy and an emergency resolution on the European Accessibility Act were adopted by the delegates.

During the afternoon session when delegates discussed the Sustainable Development Goals and the importance of taking people with disabilities on board in their implementation Chris Roberts Vice Chair of the EWGPWD, , was one of the representatives from different disability organisations to give a speech.

A full report of the event can be read here.

For more information on Alzheimer Europe and the EWGPWD's participation in this event, see the "Alzheimer Europe" news section.