The European Parliament is now in the driver’s seat concerning the future Cohesion Policy: with the Treaty of Lisbon, it has become a formal legislator in the Cohesion field. This provides the Members of Parliament with a unique opportunity to ensure that the Structural Funds meet the needs of all European citizens, especially those who are most disadvantaged.
The new Regulations on the EU Structural Funds have been released by the Commission in times of financial cuts by national governments. Support from the European Parliament is therefore required to ensure that the Structural Funds continue to foster social inclusion for persons for disabilities through innovative approaches to both employment and training. Deep political support is moreover needed to avoid major cutbacks in the financing of projects supporting people with disabilities, which will ultimately undermine the effectiveness of national disability policies.
13.00 – 13.10 Welcome and Introduction, Danuta Hübner MEP, Chair REGI Committee on Regional Development and Yannis Vardakastanis, President, European Disabilitiy Forum
13.10 – 13.30 Achievements and challenges of the proposed Regulations for 2014-2020: disability perspectives – Presentation by the European Disability Forum
13.30 – 13.50 Ádám Kósa MEP, President of the Disability Intergroup of the European Parliament, rapporteur on the EMPL opinion on the general provisions regulation
13.50 – 14.05 Elisabeth Schroedter MEP, shadow Rapporteur on the General Provisions Regulation and the European Social Fund
14.05 – 14.25 Nicholas Martyn, Deputy Director-General DG REGIO DG Development, Coordination and Communication of Cohesion Policy
14.25 – 14.45 Answers from the permanent rapporteurs and open debate
14.45 – 15.00 Closing remarks, Rosa Estaràs Ferragut MEP, Member of the Disability Intergroup and REGI Committee
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