ENIL, Independent Living News.

Editorial Update

Welcome to the August edition of ENIL,Independent Living News!

This month, our Newsletter focuses on ENIL's East Region and we introduce you to our newest ENIL Role Model Aleksandra Surla who is from Ljubljana, Slovenia. She is currently studying comparative literature and literary theory at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Lubljana. We also take an indepth look at the monitoring of the rights of disabled people in Montenegro. 
 
The Freedom Drive is quickly approaching and we bring you two new articles from our 2013 Freedom Drive Campaign.  Marek from Latvia has an electric wheelchair but is unable to leave his home in a high rise apartment block because there is no elevator in the building. Article 20 of the UN CRPD states that State Parties shall take effective measures to ensure personal mobility with the greatest possible independence for disabled people, Marek is being denied this right. Reinhart needs assistance to undertake the tasks and activities he does on a daily basis, however he has been on the waiting list for a Personal Assistance Budget ( PAB) in Flanders since 2008. Article 19 of the UN CRPD that explicitly states that disabled persons have the right to live independently in the community  and that the state needs to provide for personal assistance to guarantee that right. 

Also in this month's edition, we inform you about the case of Roelie. Roelie was a 44 year old woman with a cognitive disability, who died from the violent behavior of the caretakers in the residential institution in the Netherlands where she stayed voluntarily. To express our concern over this, ENIL has written an Open Letter to the Secretary of State at the Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sport in the Netherlands which is also available to read in this newsletter. 

Please remember that if you would like to attend this year's Freedom Drive, you can find all the information you may need here!

We hope you find this edition of the ENIL, Independent Living News, informative and encouraging!

Role Model: Aleksandra Surla

My name is Aleksandra Surla and I was born on 15th of March 1987. I live in Ljubljana, Slovenia and I have been blind since I was born. I am currently studying comparative literature and literary theory at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Ljubljana and I work as an editor of a newspapers in Braille and large-print at the Union of the Blind and Partially-Sighted of Slovenia.

When I was young I went to a local kindergarten where the teachers did not know how to treat me. I then transferred to boarding school for blind and partially-sighted children and was there for ten years.

Freedom Drive Campaign: Article 20

Mareks OdumiƆš was born in 1989 and comes from Bauska, Latvia. Marek had a joyful youth and is positive and happy with life. About one year ago, Marek’s life vastly changed as he was involved in an accident and he is now a wheelchair user.
 
The accident altered Mareks daily routine completely as he now depends on family and friends for help with everyday tasks. Due to the lack of support from the Government of Latvia, it is difficult for him to change his situation. 

Death by malpractice in an institution in The Netherlands

Last year on March 13th 2012, Roelie a 44 year old women with a cognitive disability, died from the violent behavior of the caretakers in the residential institution in the Netherlands where she stayed voluntarily. The surveillance camera’s registered everything. When the inspection later on investigated the images, they ruled that the caretakers proceeded unprofessionally and aggressively. The public prosecutor decided though to sue neither the caretakers or the service provider NOVO. Also, when Roelie’s sister appealed, the court agreed with the public prosecutor. 

Open Letter by ENIL to the Secretary of State at the Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sport in the Netherlands

The European Network on Independent Living has written an Open Letter to the Secretary of State at the Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sport in the Netherlands to express concern about the death of Roelie, a 44- year old women with intellectual disabilities and mental health problems in a residential institution in March 2012.

Monitoring the rights of disabled people in Montenegro

Monitoring the rights of disabled people in Montenegro is mainly done by disabled people’s organisations and international organizations and embassies. When it comes to monitoring the rights of disabled people by the state, it can only be done through reports or annual reports on the implementation of certain laws, strategies[1] and policies, or by the reporting by the international community, such as a write-up for the Progress report that is sent to the European Union[2]

 Freedom Drive Campaign: Article 19

Reinhart Niesten is a 23 year old wheelchair user living in Hasselt in Belgium. In April 2011, he moved out of his Parents home to a small apartment to live independently. After completing his studies he started working as a policy officer for VFG, a disabled people’s organization in their office in Brussels.

Reinhart is a bright and ambitious young man who wants to have an active, meaningful life and to contribute to society. Reinhart needs assistance to undertake the tasks and activities that he does daily on a basis such a cleaning, grocery shopping, cooking and administrative tasks. He applied for a Personal Assistance Budget (PAB) in 2008.
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More in this Issue

WHO begins online consultation on the disability Action Plan
Side event on Independent Living at the UN High-Level meeting on Disability and Development
Contributions Call-Study on the right to education of people with disabilities

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