The European Network on Independent Living is deeply concerned about the continued institutionalisation of disabled people in Hungary, and the Government’s plans to build new institutions. MEOSZ – the National Federation of Associations of Persons with Physical Disabilities, a member of ENIL, set out a list of current problems in the country, with regard to the process of “deinstitutionalisation”. They include:

  • The ineffectiveness of the National Coordinating Body for Deinstitutionalisation (IFKKOT);
  • Plans to renovate institutions for children, and no deinstitutionalisation strategy targeting children with disabilities;
  • Failure to provide those leaving institutions with opportunities to decide how, where and with whom they would like to live, resulting in simply moving people into other institutions;
  • A call for tender which encourages the establishment of institutions up to 25 persons, aimed at those with “severe” disabilities;
  • Defining “supported housing” as an apartment or a house for 7 – 12 people, with the option of having up 5o people living in the same complex;
  • The current Deinstitutionalisation Strategy, adopted without proper consultation with DPOs, which does not foresee measures to create new or improve current community-based services in the country.

A full list of issues identified by MEOSZ is available here.

With Hungary coming up for its second review by the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in March*, ENIL stands behind MEOSZ’s statement and calls on the Hungarian Government and the European Union – which continues to fund Hungary’s institutionalisation of disabled people – to comply with their obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and facilitate disabled people’s right to live independently and to be included in the community.

*Constructive dialogues between the CRPD Committee and Hungary are scheduled for 18th March (3 – 6 pm) and 19th March (10 am – 1 pm). Live webcasting will be available here. The Committee is then expected to adopt Concluding Recommendations for Hungary.

[Photo shows participants in the Freedom Drive march, in October 2019 in Brussels, and was taken by Bendeguz Nagy.]