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Equinet Seminar - Equality bodies tackling discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities

March 14th 2017

On 9th and 10th March 2017, Equinet and the Croatian Office of the Ombudswoman for Persons with Disabilities co-organised a capacity-building seminar on Equality bodies tackling discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities. The event took place in Zagreb, Croatia.

Background information

Discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities touches upon many areas of life. Despite the ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) by 27 EU Member States and the European Union itself, challenges in legislation and practice remain for persons with intellectual disabilities.

Several national and international reports highlight these challenges, such as legal capacity, political participation, the right to independent living, or the specific situation of women with intellectual disabilities. Specific reports and data focusing on persons with intellectual disabilities in Europe are however rare.

The majority of Equinet members have a mandate to address discrimination on the ground of disability. In 2014, the Perspective “Realising Rights. Equality bodies and people with disabilities. Supporting the review of the European Union Disability Strategy 2010-2020” revealed that 7 of them undertook specific activities to engage persons with intellectual disabilities in their work. This includes for instance delivering self-advocacy training, producing awareness raising tools about their rights and engaging with non-governmental organisations advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities.

Given the specific situation of persons with intellectual disabilities and the numerous challenges they face on the ground of disability and on other grounds of discrimination, there is a strong potential and demand from Equinet membership to build their capacity in this area.

Objectives

The main objective of the Seminar was to build individual capacity of equality bodies’ staff members to address discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities.

In particular, the Seminar aimed to:

  • Help equality bodies with understanding and clarifying the main concepts related to discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities.
  • Provide them with practical guidance on how to address discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities from a legal, policy and communication perspective.
  • Stimulate and support peer learning.
Selection of Photos from event

Speakers’ Presentations

OPENING SESSION

  • Welcome and opening by Evelyn Collins, Chair of Equinet, Chief Executive of the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland
  • Welcome by co-host, Anka Slonjsak, Ombudswoman for Persons with Disabilities, Croatia

SESSION 1 - Main definitions and challenges faced by persons with intellectual disabilities

Chair: Evelyn Collins, Chair of the Equinet Executive Board and Chief Executive of the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland

LEGAL WORKSHOP: Legal assistance to persons with intellectual disabilities

  • Presentation: Strategic Litigation and discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities- Oliver Lewis, Executive Director, Mental Disability Advocacy Centre
  • Discussion 1: How to use the CRPD in legal assistance to persons with intellectual disabilities? - Facilitated by Oliver Lewis, Executive Director, Mental Disability Advocacy Centre
  • Discussion 2: Legal capacity of persons with intellectual disabilities: equality bodies’ practices - Facilitated by Martha Stickings, Social Research Officer, EU Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA)

POLICY WORKSHOP: Advocating with and for persons with intellectual disabilities

COMMUNICATION WORKSHOP: Addressing underreporting and reaching out to persons with intellectual disabilities

SESSION 2 and DISCUSSION GROUPS: Discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities: intersections with the grounds of gender and age

Chair: Jessica Machacova, Membership & Policy Officer, Equinet Secretariat

CONCLUDING SESSION

  • Anne Gaspard, Equinet Executive Director
  • Anka Slonjsak, Ombudswoman for Persons with Disabilities, Croatia

Agenda

The agenda of the Seminar is available here:


Photos

Equality bodies tackling discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities
Equality bodies tackling discrimination against persons with intellectual disabilities, Zagreb, 9-10 March 2017

Reimbursement

Please fill in this reimbursement form by 15 April 2017.

You are requested to mail the original paper evidence (tickets, receipts, boarding passes, invoices...) related to your declared expenses to Equinet . Any declared expense that is unsubstantiated by related original paper evidence might be disregarded by Equinet.

The evidence needs to be sent to the attention of Yannick Godin at:

Equinet Secretariat
138 Rue Royale
1000 Brussels
Belgium

For more information

Please contact Jessica Machacova, Equinet Membership and Policy Officer.