PRESS RELEASE: Brussels, 25 May 2011
A European high-level conference under the title “Voting for all! Improving accessibility of elections in the member states of the European Union” will be held on 30 and 31 May 2011 in Brussels. The conference is organised as a final event for the project “Accommodating Diversity for Active Participation in the European Elections” (ADAP) carried out by Inclusion Europe and self-advocates from its member organisations ENABLE (Scotland), Nous Aussi (France) and SPMP (Czech Republic) since December 2009.
The aim of the project has been to ensure greater participation of traditionally disadvantaged voters in elections across Europe. Be it for the electoral campaigns providing information which is complicated and hard to understand, or for lack of accessibility measures, the general set up of elections often excludes some citizens who therefore cannot exercise their right to vote. This includes people with intellectual, sensory and physical disabilities, as well as the elderly and other groups at risk of non-participation due to language or other barriers such as EU citizens living in
another EU member state.
The European high-level conference brings together politicians, representatives of national electoral commissions and relevant government bodies as well as other EU and international stakeholders to discuss concrete measures for more accessible elections. Among them are the members of the European Parliament (MEPs), representatives from the European Commission, the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) and the Council of Europe Committee of Experts on Participation of People with Disabilities in Political and Public Life (CAHAPAH-PPL). The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions & Human Rights (ODIHR) and International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) will also be represented.
The conference will celebrate the results of the above-mentioned project, namely the Policy Recommendations for Accessible Elections, a collection of Good Practices on Accessible Elections in Europe and the “Voting for all!” guide on campaigning for more accessible elections.
The event will take place at Four Points by Sheraton Hotel, Rue Paul Spaak 15, 1000 Brussels. Interpretation into English and French is provided.
More information about the event is available at www.rights-into-action.eu.
Inclusion Europe (IE) is the European voice and representation of over 60 member organizations of people with intellectual disabilities and their families. Founded in 1988, Inclusion Europe has over 20-year track record of successful operation and defending the rights of its constituency.
For more information, please contact:
T. +32-2-502 28 15 F. +32-2-502 80 10
A. Galeries de la Toison d’Or, 29 Chaussée d’Ixelles B-1050 Brussels, Belgium