For me the situation of people with disabilities is really a matter of fairness; fairness for everyone, wherever you are from, and whatever is your social, economic or cultural background. Disabilities can affect anyone in any part of the world. It could be you, or you, or me or somebody within my family. Unfortunately, not everywhere is this recognised to the same extent and not everywhere are people with disabilities seen and treated as part of the mainstream of life – not even within Europe. Not even within Sweden.
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Conference organised by the European Disability Forum (EDF) at the EESC on 10 June 2013
All adult Europeans, including those with disabilities, have the right to vote in national and European Parliament elections. A report by European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) rapporteur Krzysztof Pater estimates that around 800 000 EU citizens in 16 EU countries are legally deprived by national rules of their right to vote in elections to the European Parliament because of their disabilities or mental health problems.
This report presents the state of play of the implementation of the right of European Union (EU) citizens with disabilities to vote in elections to the European Parliament (EP). The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), an EU advisory body, believes it has a duty, in the run-up to the EP elections, to provide EU institutions, Member States and EU citizens with a full picture of how this right is actually implemented. The EESC hopes that at the next elections in 2024, no EU citizen will be deprived of their right to vote because of their disability.
Inaugural speech by President Jahier entitled: "From Austerity to Growth and Recovery: Overcoming the Socio-Economic Consequences of Greece's Crisis" delivered at the Group III extraordinary meeting in Athens, on Thursday 20 March 20104.
This publication is part of a series of catalogues published in the context of the exhibitions organised by the EESC.