EU supports people with disabilities | EUNewsletter

EU supports people with disabilities

26 January 2016
ARS_3294

On 22 January 2016, the “IDEAS: Inclusive decisions for equal and accountable society” project celebrated the achievements reached over the past three years of efforts to support people with disabilities in Armenia to have a say in decision-making process and become active members of society. The project was implemented by the British Council office in Armenia and Unison NGO and funded by the European Union.
2Ambassador Piotr Switalski, the Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, underlined in his speech the importance of the activities and EU’s commitment to the cause of people with disabilities.
‘I am Polish and I spent slightly more than a half of my life under real socialism in Poland and the USSR. And I remember from my early years that one couldn’t see people with disabilities on the streets in USSR or in Poland. When I went for the first time to the West in 1980, to the Netherlands, I suddenly saw plenty of people in wheelchairs in the streets. And I didn’t know how to explain this difference. I was told that perfect societies don’t like imperfect people. This project is not only about empowering people with disabilities and helping them to feel legitimate and equal members of society, it is also about overcoming the bad legacies, is of strategic importance. In many countries, including Poland, this is already a reality; during the past 25 years we were able to overcome this prejudice. There are many parlamentarians, politicians with disabilities in Poland, in the European Parliament, and nobody finds it unusual. Another important aspect of this project is that it is implemented in several regions of Armenia, because there is a very big gap between Yerevan and the other parts of Armenia’.
Vache Terteryan, the Armenian Deputy Minister of Territorial Administration and Emergency Situations congratulated all involved in the project with the successful implementation: ‘I am very impressed with the Ambassador’s speech and I think he summed up the aim of this project. Disability issues are very important to us and we pay a lot of attention to the perceptions and judgements. The Inclusive Planning Checklist that was published by this project is very important for us and we are going to distribute it in all possible ways.
The Inclusive Decision-making Checklist was developed by Unison NGO, local and UK experts and has been piloted in the city of Artik. The Checklist encourages public discussions with all stakeholders and in Artik this resulted in an accessible city park and cultural centre. The EU and Unison was very pleased to see that the Artik City Council finished the construction of wheelchair ramps in very short time.
The project has organised a series of activities to increase awareness of local authorities, other civil society organisations and media outlets.

EU supports people with disabilities

On 22 January 2016, the “IDEAS: Inclusive decisions for equal and accountable society” project celebrated the achievements reached over the past three years of efforts to support people with disabilities in Armenia to have a say in decision-making process and become active members of society. The project was implemented by the British Council office in Armenia and Unison NGO and funded by the European Union. 2Ambassador Piotr Switalski, the Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, underlined in his speech the importance of the activities and EU’s commitment to the cause of people with disabilities. ‘I am Polish and I spent slightly more than a half of my life under real socialism in Poland and the USSR. And I remember from my early years that one couldn’t see people with disabilities on the streets in USSR or in Poland. When I went for the first time to the West in 1980, to the Netherlands, I suddenly saw plenty of people in wheelchairs in the streets. And I didn’t know how to explain this difference. I was told that perfect societies don’t like imperfect people. This project is not only about empowering people with disabilities and helping them to feel legitimate and equal members of society, it is also about overcoming the bad legacies, is of strategic importance. In many countries, including Poland, this is already a reality; during the past 25 years we were able to overcome this prejudice. There are many parlamentarians, politicians with disabilities in Poland, in the European Parliament, and nobody finds it unusual. Another important aspect of this project is that it is implemented in several regions of Armenia, because there is a very big gap between Yerevan and the other parts of Armenia’. Vache Terteryan, the Armenian Deputy Minister of Territorial Administration and Emergency Situations congratulated all involved in the project with the successful implementation: ‘I am very impressed with the Ambassador's speech and I think he summed up the aim of this project. Disability issues are very important to us and we pay a lot of attention to the perceptions and judgements. The Inclusive Planning Checklist that was published by this project is very important for us and we are going to distribute it in all possible ways. The Inclusive Decision-making Checklist was developed by Unison NGO, local and UK experts and has been piloted in the city of Artik. The Checklist encourages public discussions with all stakeholders and in Artik this resulted in an accessible city park and cultural centre. The EU and Unison was very pleased to see that the Artik City Council finished the construction of wheelchair ramps in very short time. The project has organised a series of activities to increase awareness of local authorities, other civil society organisations and media outlets.