The Present and Future of Personal Assistance in Europe

The Present and Future of Personal Assistance in Europe

International conference organised by the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL)

Personal assistance (PA) is essential for realising disabled people’s right to independent living and community inclusion, as stated in Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. In response to decades of advocacy on behalf of user-led organisations such as the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL), PA schemes have spread throughout Europe.

However, in recent years, many of these schemes have been subjected to cuts, tightening of eligibility criteria or other forms of restructuring. Given these trends, what is the current state of PA in Europe and what are the prospects of this fundamental condition for disabled people’s participation in social life?

These questions have been addressed in a new research on PA conducted as part of the project ‘User-Led Personal Assistance in the European Union: A Critical Comparative Analysis’. The project is led by Teodor Mladenov, Marie Curie Research Fellow at ENIL, and is funded by the European Commission through its Horizon 2020 funding programme.

The results of this research will be presented and discussed in relation to other pressing issues concerning PA in Europe at a half-day conference organised by ENIL under the title The Present and Future of Personal Assistance in Europe. Disability advocates, academics, representatives of international organisations and policy makers at the EU level are invited to take part and come up with ideas about strengthening the protections for disabled people’s right to live independently and be include in the community.

The event will take place on 25 March 2019, from 13:30 till 17:30 (with a reception from 18:00), in Mundo J, Rue de l’industrie 10, Brussels, Belgium.

Confirmed speakers:

  • Jamie Bolling, Director, Independent Living Institute, Sweden
  • Dr Teodor Mladenov, Marie Curie Research Fellow, ENIL, Belgium
  • Dr Ciara Brennan, Centre for Disability Studies, University of Iceland, Iceland
  • Frank Sioen, Advocacy Officer, ENIL, Belgium
  • Miro Griffiths, Teaching Fellow in Disability Studies, University of Leeds, UK

Click here for the provisional programme

For enquiries, please contact Teodor Mladenov at

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 747027. This document reflects only the author’s view. The Research Executive Agency of the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

The logos of EU and ENIL


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